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Restaurant owners say City of Golden’s plan to scale back outdoor dining will hurt business

Businesses in Miner's Alley will have to stop offering outdoor dining immediately after Labor Day weekend
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Posted at 3:43 PM, Sep 03, 2022
and last updated 2022-09-03 19:37:38-04

GOLDEN, Colo. — The City of Golden is scaling back on what became a staple during the pandemic — outdoor dining.

However, this only applies to businesses in Miner's Alley at the moment, making business owners in that area upset.

They don't have much time before they'll have to adjust to this new policy.

Stephen Gould, the owner of Golden Moon Distillery, said he has until after Labor Day weekend before he has to stop offering outdoor dining.

Restaurant owners say City of Golden’s plan to scale back outdoor dining will hurt business

This became a lifeline for several business owners during the pandemic, but now Golden city leaders are reassembling things to be the way they were pre-COVID.

Miner's Alley will reopen to traffic for the first time in two years.

Gould, who owns Golden Moon Distillery and Golden Moon Speakeasy, says doing away with outdoor seating can really hurt his business. He said if he can't offer outdoor dining, it might turn customers away to other businesses that do.

He adds it's unfair that other local businesses in Golden will be able to continue offering outdoor seating at least for a couple more months.

There's a concern about finding storage to put all the tables and chairs, and the impact renewed traffic will have on his business.

"We're in an alley and before we moved into this alley, people would tear through this alley at high rates of speed, often in the wrong direction to try and get around Washington traffic. We believe this if this alley is open again to traffic, it's only a matter of time before somebody's hurt or killed," said Gould.

He tells Denver7, that he predicts he'll lose about 40% of his sales once these changes are implemented.

Gould said he's also thinking about the overall positive impacts this has on the city.

"It brings tourism dollars to Golden and it helps benefit the city and the community. It creates jobs for Golden residents. And taking this away from the two of us in the alley just doesn't seem to be consistent with where the City of Golden is heading," added Gould.

He said he's in constant communication with city council members, attempting to fight this.

Denver7 reached out to a few Golden city leaders for a statement but has not heard back.