DENVER (KDVR) – Gov. Jared Polis announced Tuesday that the Denver Broncos will allow fans in a limited capacity at Empower Field at Mile High Stadium starting with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers game on Sept. 27.
FOX31 first reported this announcement on Sunday after sources told us about the plan.
The total number of fans allowed will be 5,700, which is about 7.5% of the stadiums 76,125 capacity.
Polis explained that the general plan will be to create a series of groups limited to 175 people. These groups determine when fans are allowed into the stadium, where they’re sitting and the access they have to concessions and restrooms.
Other changes include mandatory face coverings and the elimination of tailgating. Empower Field at Mile High has also installed entirely mobile/cashless technology for concessions, touchless restrooms, improved air purification and increased sanitization.
“Empower Field at Mile High will look and feel very different this year,” Broncos VP Brittany Bowlen said during her announcement with the governor.
Season ticket members will automatically be entered into a weighted lottery for single-game tickets and parking passes.
A release from the Broncos said the team and stadium officials will work with CDPHE and health experts with the goal of allowing larger crowds in the future.
“We are able to take this step due to Coloradans doing our part in wearing masks and avoiding large groups and the commitment and dedication of the Broncos to go above and beyond in putting together an experience for fans that is as safe as possible. As I’ve been saying all along, this virus isn’t going away any time soon and we’ve got to figure out a way to live with this virus,” Polis said.
CDPHE has outlined a number of protocols that must be followed for all outdoor events. It also has separate guidelines for professional sporting events. The Colorado Rockies have a variance approved for practices and games, but it does not include fans.
A few other NFL teams, including the Kansas City Chiefs, have plans for allowing fans in stadiums starting this week.
The Chiefs announced plans for a reduced capacity of 22% when they kick off their season Sept. 10 against the Houston Texans. With a seating capacity of approximately 76,000, the reduction would equate to about 16,700 fans.