The world’s largest cannabis cultivation facility officially broke ground this week, with a ceremony at the 30-acre stretch of land that will soon be a center for canadian cannabis just minutes away from the Edmonton International Airport. The grow-op, dubbed Aurora Sky, will encompass 800,000 square-feet and, once complete, be able to produce upwards of 200,000 pounds of cannabis per year.
According to the Edmonton Journal, the facility, owned and operated by Aurora Cannabis, is already partially constructed, with pre-engineered modules imported from the Netherlands making up the enormous structure. For Aurora executive vice-president Cam Battley, the stadium-sized greenhouse is just the first step in revolutionizing Edmonton’s place in Canada’s impending legalization boom.
“It’s astonishing. We’re building the country’s largest cannabis facility on 30 acres of federal land,” Battley said. “If you add all these things up…I think what we see is the beginning of the development of an industrial cluster or a centre of excellence with respect to both medical and consumer cannabis right here in Edmonton,”
That sentiment is backed up by Edmonton’s Municipal Affairs Minister, Shaye Anderson, who was also at hand for Friday’s ceremony.
“This is an anchor,” Anderson said. “Other businesses and industries will see this as a great place to invest.”
When it is complete, and Canadian legalization is fully implemented, Aurora Sky is set to create hundreds of new employment opportunities.
“We’re talking jobs from highly skilled technical jobs all the way down to basic labour jobs, which is great. This is what we need,” Anderson said.
The facility is expected to be fully constructed by the time Canada’s cannabis legalization goes into effect in July 2018, but Battley and the company expect to begin cultivation before the end of 2017 - after all, there should be plenty of room.