Contact Us

New York Set To Legalize Cannabis, Paving The Way For A Possible Retail Boost


New York just got closer to legalizing the sale and use of recreational cannabis, carving out a path for a new type of tenant to take up space in the city’s empty retail stores. 

Gov. Andrew Cuomo came to an agreement with the state legislature yesterday to make the substance legal for recreational use for those over 21 years old, which includes giving out dispensary licenses for retailers to open stores throughout the state, Bloomberg reports.

“I think this should've been passed years ago,” Cuomo told Insider in January.

The deal would include taxing sales at 13%, with revenue split between state and local governments, according to Bloomberg. For New York City’s hurting retail real estate market, the move creates opportunity for growth. 

Real estate has been a benefactor in state legalizations across the country. Dispensaries outpaced Starbucks stores in total retail locations in Denver during 2017 and one Massachusetts dispensary looked to get ahead in the industry by leasing up a space years ahead of occupying it, The New York Times reported at the time

The industry could infuse $4.6B into the state’s economy in 2023 with New York pouring an estimated $362M in retail tax revenue into the budget, according to a report by the New York Medical Cannabis Industry Association.

The recreational industry nationwide is set to reach up to $15.9B in sales by the end of this year, with more states legalizing the substance, including neighboring New Jersey, where Gov. Phil Murphy signed legalization legislation into law last month.