Denver Extends Temporary Outdoor Dining Program through October 2021

Published on September 29, 2020

The City and County of Denver announced today it is extending the temporary allowance for restaurants and bars to expand outdoors through October 2021. The program was previously slated to end October 31, 2020.

“We’re proud this program has been a lifeblood for expanded serving capacity to help keep Denver businesses open and their employees working,” Mayor Michael B. Hancock said. “We will work with restaurants and bars on creative models that allow them to extend this program through the cold weather months, while maintaining the strenuous protections in place to prevent COVID-19 transmission.”

Businesses not impacting the public right of way can request a 120-day extension past Oct. 31. Businesses that have expanded into the public right of way can request a 90-day extension past Oct. 31, allowing Denver’s Department of Transportation and Infrastructure (DOTI) to review street, sidewalk, alley, parking and travel lane closures associated with the program. Under new rules, businesses participating in the program can also apply for additional extensions after being approved for their 90- or 120-day extension. Each neighborhood impacted by the outdoor expansion extension will have the ability to request a public hearing to address issues such as concerning noise levels if they exist. Common questions about the program are answered in the program FAQs.

Denver joins major cities across the nation in supporting restaurants, with 333 restaurants and bars approved to expand their serving capacity outdoors in the Mile High City. In addition, more than $1.6 million in street occupancy fees have been waived by the city to make the program more affordable for applicants. Applications are still being accepted online. Denver will continue to offer process navigators to provide individual customer service to businesses as they navigate the process in applying or extending their outdoor expansion. Business owners can send questions about the program via email to The city is also encouraging restaurants and bars who would like permanent outdoor patio expansion to begin the application process this fall. More information about getting a permanent outdoor expansion can be found here.

This initiative was developed in collaboration with the Mayor’s Economic Relief and Recovery Council, an advisory group established to support the relief and recovery efforts of Denver’s economy.