Magazine Feature

Crimson and Gold liquor license denied

The city of Denver has decided not to approve a liquor license for the Crimson and Gold, a would-be restaurant and bar at 2017 S. University Blvd.

Penny May, director of the Department of Excise and Licenses, issued the ruling March 23. She disqualified the license application on grounds that the building where the Crimson and Gold would operate is within 500 feet of the Ricks Center for Gifted Children at 2040 S. York St.

The proposed restaurant and bar is across an alley and slightly north of the center’s property line. The distance, as measured by a city inspector, does not meet the 500-foot minimum, May ruled. The applicants for the license, Kevin and Craig Caldwell, contended that the city measured the distance improperly.

“The city has never measured through alleys,” says attorney Robert Dill (JD ’74) on behalf of the applicants. “You’re supposed to use the sidewalks.”

But a hearing officer ruled March 3 that the city’s measurement was valid and May subsequently accepted that finding.

In objections to the hearing officer’s recommendation, Dill questioned whether the Ricks Center meets the statute’s definition of a school, which specifies that it be “public or parochial.” He also submitted a list of liquor licenses that the city issued to other establishments even though the sites were within 500 feet of a school.

May ruled that the Ricks Center qualifies as a school under state law, and she declined to consider other licenses issued to other establishments. That information was not part of the record, she wrote, and could not be considered in her final decision.

“It’s unfortunate that this has turned into a battle over such a small place,” Dill says. “It’s just a hamburger restaurant. The whole area is surrounded by bars and restaurants that are within 500 feet of Ricks.

“[The Caldwells] are disappointed.”

Comments are closed.