marijuana garden
People will also be allowed to grow up to 45 plants in their homes under these new rules, if they have a state license. (AP Photo/File)

Seattle City Council approves pot zones, size of marijuana farms

Seattle will allow pot farms of up to 20,000 square feet under new rules adopted by the City Council on Monday.

The council has decided where pot businesses can set up their farms and how big they can be.

Most industrial areas in the city will be allowed to have farms of up to 10,000 square feet. Farms double that size will be allowed in a zone near Boeing Field.

Councilmember Nick Licata said the city is in uncharted territory right now.

"We are in a delicate position of trying to, quite honestly, create a new industry, an industry that in 48 other states is still illegal," he said.

People will also be allowed to grow up to 45 plants in their homes under these new rules, if they have a state license.

Washington's legal marijuana law already includes zoning requirements keeping the businesses away from schools, parks and playgrounds. Seattle's measure additionally keeps them out of historic and landmark districts and residential areas.

Seattle's ordinance also addresses medical marijuana operations in the city, making clear they will have to obtain state licenses if they want to continue operating past Jan. 1, 2015.

The state currently has no regulated medical marijuana system, but officials are considering ways to regulate medical marijuana so that it doesn't undercut recreational pot sales or prompt federal crackdowns. Recreational pot stores are expected to open by next summer.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Chris Sullivan, KIRO Radio Reporter
Chris loves the rush of covering breaking news and works hard to try to make sense of it all while telling stories about real people in extraordinary circumstances.
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