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State approves variance to expand restaurant capacity in El Paso County

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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- Restaurants in El Paso County will be able to serve more people now that a new public health variance was approved by the state of Colorado.

We reported last week when the El Paso County Board of Commissioners passed the newest variance amid the coronavirus pandemic. This new variance increases the capacity for indoor restaurants and private venues to 175 people or 50% occupancy, whichever is fewer.

Under the previous guidelines, restaurants could only have up to 50 customers or half of occupancy.

El Paso County Commissioner Chairman Mark Waller confirmed to KRDO on Monday that the new variance was approved. It will take effect immediately.

While some restaurants may not see any additional customers because of their capacities, others will be able to serve more customers at once. Ben Biggs with Phantom Canyon Brewery spoke to KRDO last week and said the restaurant would be able to more than double its current capacity.

The variance also lets shuttle bus service in El Paso County resume as long as passenger capacity is limited to 50%.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Governor's Office make the final approval for any variance requests submitted. The state moved past its stay-at-home phase weeks ago, and more businesses have returned to partial service.

For updated information on COVID-19 cases in Colorado, click this link.

Colorado Springs / Local News / News

Andrew McMillan

Andrew is the Digital Content Director for KRDO.com. Learn more about Andrew here.

Comments

6 Comments

  1. “This new variance increases the capacity for indoor restaurants and private venues to 175 people or 50% occupancy, whichever is fewer. Under the previous guidelines, restaurants could only have up to 50 customers or half of occupancy.”
    .
    “50% occupancy” and “half of occupancy” are the same in my book… 🙄

    1. The previous limit was the lower of 50 people or 50% total capacity. It’s being changed/increased to the lower of 175 people or 50%. If an establishment has a total capacity of 100 patrons or less, there is no change for them. Larger establishments are the biggest winners with this change.

  2. I don’t care if they blow them wide open I wouldn’t be caught dead in gathering of ppl I didn’t personally know. People in this state / city are way too stupid to be trusted. The virus is real but the facts on it are in question..better safe than sorry.

  3. So while more and more of the country is shutting back down we are going to try and spike in Colorado as well. Hell why not! Might as well make is so bad that we won’t be able to open schools back up in the fall and truly ruin the economy by creating the need for a second shut down.

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