Denver Coronavirus: 'Essential' Businesses, Services List

Amber Fisher
·7 min read

This article originally appeared on the Denver Patch

DENVER, CO — In several news conferences over the past week, Gov. Jared Polis has highlighted the difficulty in balancing the mitigation of an economic meltdown with the fight against the new coronavirus. Businesses are allowed to operate if their employees work from home, but there are many casualties already — salon owners, clothing stores, shopping malls, toy stores — to name only a few.

So which businesses and services are not considered essential? Denver has released the following list:

  • Animal groomers

  • Automotive non-essential: Car washes are prohibited, with or without employees, along with detailing services, stereo installation, and other non-essential automotive services.

  • Beauty, hair salons, and personal services:Hair styling, nails, waxing, tanning, and other personal grooming services.

  • Bridal fittings and seamstress services:Prohibited even if by appointment.

  • Clothing stores:Prohibited, regardless of location within a mall or not

  • Commercial/residential contractor showrooms

  • Furniture delivery

  • Housecleaning/residential services

  • Massage parlors

  • Shopping malls:Only essential businesses with a mall may remain open.

  • Sign/graphic companies:Unless serving essential businesses.

  • Sports, athletics, and physical therapy:One-on-one sports training sessions even if held outside, i.e., tennis or golf lessons.

  • Storage units:Visits to storage units are prohibited.

  • Support Groups and 12-step meetings:They cannot be held in person, even with strict physical distancing. Meetings must only be held virtually or by phone.

  • Toy Stores and learning/educational supply stores

  • Vape shops

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Denver businesses and services that are allowed to remain open under the public health order:

  • Acupuncture:Up to medical providers to determine what is essential and what is not essential.

  • Aerospace:Businesses operating in, or in direct support of, the aerospace industry.

  • Air Care Facilities:(e.g., HVAC, whether residential or for an Essential Business)

  • Airlines: A private transportation provider or a transportation support provider as necessary to carry out the activities that an individual may leave the home for.

  • Animals:A veterinary office, animal shelter(for the reunification of lost pets), pet-boarding service, or other services provided for animal healthcare.

  • Animal Supply & Equipment

  • Architects

  • Automotive Essential Services/Auto Mechanics (Repairs only): A gas station, auto supply shop, auto repair shop, car dealerships (repair shop only), or a related facility.

  • Banking:A bank or other financial institution when observing extreme physical distancing.

  • Bicycle Shops

  • Blood Donations

  • Breweries & Brew Pubs:Establishments licensed as Brew Pubs may sell for off-site consumption. Breweries MAY be able to sell for off-site consumption if they have an “approved for salesroom,” which is a permit from the state. If the brewery does not have this permit, it cannot sell for off-premise use. Wineries may not sell for outside consumption.

  • Burials & Cremations

  • Businesses Supplying Parts/Equipment To Essential Businesses

  • Caterers:Provided they are preparing food for pickup/carryout.

  • Child Care:Childcare facilities where each child-care provider remains solely with one group of children made up of 10 or fewer of the same children in the same group per room each day.

  • Coffee Shops:to-go only, with product sales allowed as well (I.e., coffee beans) when observing extreme physical distancing.

  • Commercial Cleaning Services

  • Community Corrections & Halfway Houses

  • Construction:A business that provides services or performs work necessary for the operation of public works construction, construction on publicly-owned facilities, construction of housing, airport operations, water, sewer, gas, electrical, oil refining, roads and highways, public transportation, solid waste collection and removal, or internet and telecommunications. Home renovation and reconstruction is also allowed.

  • Convenience Stores:when observing extreme physical distancing.

  • Defense:businesses operating in direct support of the defense industry.

  • Dispensaries:when observing extreme physical distancing.

  • Dog Walkers:when observing extreme physical distancing.

  • Delivery Service:A business that ships or delivers food, goods, or services directly to residences or Essential Businesses listed herein.

  • Employee Support Services:A business that supplies technology or products needed for people to work from home.

  • Faith-based Memorial Services:limited to faith-based practices only.

  • Financial Institutions:including banks and credit unions.

  • Flower Delivery:when observing extreme social distancing.

  • Food Cultivation:A business that cultivates food or plants, farms, maintains livestock, or fishes.

  • Food Trucks:allowed since service is carry-out only and when observing extreme social distancing.

  • Grocery Stores:A grocery store, supermarket, convenience store, food bank, certified farmers’ market, farm or produce stand or other establishment engaged in the retail sale of household consumer products.

  • Hardware Stores

  • Health Care Industry:A hospital, clinic, dentist office, pharmacy, pharmaceutical or biotechnical company, healthcare supplier, home healthcare service provider, behavioral health provider, medical supply manufacturer, other healthcare facilities, or provider of related or ancillary healthcare services.

  • Home-based Care:A business that provides home-based care for seniors, adults, or children.

  • Hospital Visits:when observing extreme social distancing.

  • Hotel/Motel:This exception does not include a short-term rental location or a residence leased through a short-term rental platform.

  • Landscaping:only allowed involving emergency/urgent repairs or mechanical systems

  • Laundromats & Dry Cleaners:Laundromats, dry cleaners, and laundry service providers.

  • Law Firms

  • Liquor Stores:Stores selling alcohol may remain open, so long as physical distancing protocols are developed and strictly implemented to limit the number of people on the premises.

  • Machine Shops (parts, fabrication, engineering, rental): Manufacturing is allowed; other machine-shop functions allowed if serving essential businesses and functions.

  • Mailing, Shipping, and Post Office Services:A business providing mailing or shipping services, including post offices and post office boxes.

  • Maintenance Services:A plumber, electrician, exterminator, or other providers of services that are necessary for the critical maintenance of safety, sanitation, and essential operation of residences, Essential Activities or one of the Essential Businesses listed herein.

  • Manufacturers Serving Essential Businesses:including medical devices and supplies.

  • Marijuana Stores:Licensed marijuana stores, so long as physical distancing protocols are developed and strictly implemented to limit the number of people on the premises

  • Media:A business that publishes a newspaper or produces television, radio, or other media services.

  • Medical Care/Facilities:A hospital, clinic, dentist office, pharmacy, pharmaceutical or biotechnical company, healthcare supplier, home healthcare service provider, behavioral health provider, medical supply manufacturer, other healthcare facilities, or provider of related or ancillary healthcare services.

  • Medical Procedures & Testing:if deemed critical and urgent by medical personnel; elective procedures are prohibited.

  • Mental Health Services:when observing extreme physical distancing.

  • Nannies/In-home CHildcare:when observing extreme physical distancing.

  • Optometrists:up to medical providers to determine what is essential and what is not.

  • Outpatient Rehabilitation & Chiropractic Services:up to medical providers to determine what is essential versus elective.

  • Parental Visits By Non-Custodial Parents:custody/visitation as granted by court order.

  • Pedal Cabs:when providing for essential trips and when observing extreme physical distancing.

  • Police & First Responder Supply Stores

  • Printing Companies:only in support of essential businesses

  • Professional Services:Including legal, insurance, real estate, tax preparation or accounting services.

  • Real Estate Agents, Appraisers, Closings, and Showings:when observing extreme physical distancing.

  • Residential Care Facilities:A residential care facility or shelter for seniors, adults, and children.

  • Restaurants:A restaurant or other facility that prepares or serves food only for delivery, take-out, or drive-thru.

  • Restaurants at the Denver Airport:Concessions at DEN that prepare and serve food or beverages may provide on-site dining, but must comply with social distancing requirements which includes the six-foot distance requirement and compliance with handwashing/cleaning requirements.

  • Ride-Sharing or Taxis:Providing critical transportation for Essential Activities and Essential Travel only.

  • Schools Providing Food:Facilities that prepare or serve food only for delivery, take-out, or drive through, including schools that provide food only for pick up and take-away.

  • Scooters:when providing for essential trips

  • Solar Installations

  • Social Services:An organization that provides food, shelter, social services, or other necessities of life for economically disadvantaged or otherwise needy individuals.

  • Thrift Stores:Thrift stores may operate a drive-thru drop off, collect donations and continue regular operations, following extreme physical distancing protocols.

  • Transporting Children for Co-Parenting:custody/visitation as granted by court order.

  • Trips to ICE Detention Facility:to pick up persons being released.

  • Truck Drivers:when supporting essential businesses and when observing extreme physical distancing.

  • Tutors, In-home:only if they cannot teach remotely.

  • Volunteering:if in support of vulnerable populations and essential services, and when observing extreme physical distancing.

  • Warehouses:allowed if serving essential businesses.

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