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Cannabis-related businesses

Currently the retail sale of cannabis is not permitted in Calgary. The City of Calgary will continue to enforce existing laws related to cannabis sales until the new legislation comes into effect. Currently, permits and business licenses are not being issued to allow for the retail sale of cannabis.

With the proposed legalization of cannabis expecting to come into effect in 2018, The City of Calgary is currently developing new rules to accommodate the sale and consumption of cannabis.

Federal rules for cannabis businesses

Federal legislation  will enable a regulatory regime for the licensed production of cannabis and sale of medical cannabis, which would be controlled by the federal government, as well as the distribution and sale of recreational cannabis, which would be controlled by the provincial government.

Provincial rules for cannabis businesses

Updates to the Alberta Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis Regulation were introduced on Feb. 16, 2018, that will govern how privately owned retail stores will operate, including:

  • who can own cannabis stores
  • where they can be located
  • staff requirements
  • safety and security requirements
  • other operational details

The Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission (AGLC) will carry out licensing, oversight and compliance functions for privately owned cannabis retail stores, as well as managing the distribution of cannabis to these stores.

Details on the provincial process and requirements for applying to be a cannabis retailer are now available. The AGLC will begin accepting applications on Mar. 6, 2018.

Calgary permits and licensing

Based on the information currently available, municipalities in Alberta will be responsible for the location and regulations for cannabis stores. The provincial government has indicated that retail cannabis stores will be privately operated, while only the government will be allowed to conduct online sales of cannabis.

To accommodate the retail sale and production of cannabis products in Calgary, The City is considering how best to formulate regulations at the municipal level. New Land Use Bylaw amendments were proposed at the Standing Policy Committee on Planning and Urban Development meeting on February 21, 2018. These proposed Land Use Bylaw amendments will be considered by Council on April 5, 2018. This meeting is open to the public to address Council. The public can view the reports and watch the meetings online. The City anticipates accepting applications for Cannabis Stores in late April.

Businesses currently operating as a Medical Marihuana Counselling use that want to sell cannabis will be required to apply for a development permit for the cannabis store use with The City of Calgary.


  • February 21, 2018: Land Use Bylaw Amendments to Planning and Urban Development Committee
  • April 3 and 4, 2018: Smoking, Business Licence, Transit Bylaw amendments to Committee
  • April 5, 2018: All proposed bylaw amendments to Public Hearing of Council
  • Q3 2018 (Anticipated): second and third reading to proposed Land Use Bylaw Amendments to allow the Cannabis Store use in some land use districts



Cannabis Businesses FAQ