Side Streets: Colorado Springs drug treatment center won't have marijuana shop next door after all

After declaring the U.S. attorney's enforcement of drug-free school zones arbitrary and not based on law, the owner of several medical marijuana dispensaries and recreational pot shops statewide has abandoned a dispensary he was developing near Colorado College, walking away from it just weeks before it was scheduled to open.

Dispensary owner Brian Ruden said Tuesday that he made the decision after federal officials told Side Streets in a March column that Ruden's Tree of Wellness II at 705 N. Nevada Ave. risked being shut down if it opened because of its proximity to two schools north of downtown.

The U.S. Attorney's Office in Denver became aware of Ruden and his dispensary after a Feb. 27 Side Streets reported the complaints of Joanie Lewis, owner of a long-established drug abuse counseling and treatment center, Insight Services, next door.

Lewis called me in frustration after members of the City Council simply...

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