Com­pany with lo­cal ties opens new cannabis de­sign divi­sion

Cecil Whig - - FRONT PAGE - By CH­ERYL MATTIX

cmat­tix@ce­cil­whig.com

— Paul Risk Con­struc­tion, a fam­ily-owned com­mer­cial con­struc­tion com­pany with Ce­cil County ties, an­nounced this week the cre­ation of a new divi­sion to fo­cus on build­ing med­i­cal mar­i­juana fa­cil­i­ties in the mid-At­lantic re­gion.

The firm is fo­cus­ing on Penn­syl­va­nia and Mary­land right now, but hopes to ex­pand into ad­ja­cent states as the de­mand in­creases.

The de­sign build divi­sion’s lead­ers have back­grounds in con­struc­tion, green­house grow­ing and cannabis pro­duc­tion. They in­clude Justin Wis­niewski, pres­i­dent; Pa­trick Clark, vice pres­i­dent of con­struc­tion, and Trey Pyfer, vice pres­i­dent of hor­ti­cul­ture.

The new firm doesn’t have any signed con­tracts yet, but is al­ready pric­ing a grower/pro­ces­sor fa­cil­ity for one of Mary­land’s 15 li­censees. Mary­land le­gal­ized med­i­cal mar­i­juana in 2014 and Penn­syl­va­nia passed it in 2016.

“We think Penn­syl­va­nia will be award­ing 25 li­censes for grower/pro­ces­sors in early 2017,” said Justin Wis­niewski, pres­i­dent of Cannabis De­sign Build.

Wis­niewski, who grew up in Li­titz, Pa., lived in Cal­i­for­nia for five years and man­aged or­ganic cannabis pro­duc­tion from seed to sale, be­fore re­turn­ing to Lan­caster County to be close to fam­ily.

“We’re get­ting a lot of in­ter­est since

QUARRYVILLE, PA.

open­ing,” he said.

Don­ald J. Risk, who took over as pres­i­dent of Paul Risk Con­struc­tion from his fa­ther Steve Risk in Fe­bru­ary, got in­ter­ested in fo­cus­ing on the cannabis in­dus­try ear­lier this year.

“We saw a huge op­por­tu­nity in this new in­dus­try,” Risk said. “But, we’re not just fo­cused on this as an in­vest­ment op­por­tu­nity for us, we know this is a com­plex in­dus­try and are ded­i­cated to en­sur­ing the fa­cil­i­ties are built the right way and with re­spect for the com­mu­nity.”

Risk says the team he has put in place to run the new busi­ness has ex­per­tise and pas­sion for the mis­sion.

“I’ve seen friends and loved ones suf­fer from cancer, in­tractable pain and other mal­adies that could be re­lieved through the use of cannabis,” Wis­niewski said. “It’s my goal to ed­u­cate the com­mu­nity about how we can hold true to our val­ues, while pro­vid­ing re­lief to those that are suf­fer­ing.”

The new team at Cannabis De­sign Build sees the com­pany evolv­ing as tech­nol­ogy changes.

“We’re also ex­plor­ing the hemp mar­ket,” Wis­niewski said.

Paul Risk Con­struc­tion is an 83-year-old firm based in Quarryville. Sev­eral years ago, Paul Risk As­so­ci­ates had an of­fice on Main Street in Port De­posit and at one time Steve Risk had a pro­posal to re­de­velop the Tome School into a con­tin­u­ing care fa­cil­ity, though those plans ul­ti­mately fell through and the site is now pur­su­ing a new di­rec­tion.

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