Hosting Special Events on the 16th Street Mall

The 16th Street Mall is a premier destination in Downtown Denver for visitors, employees, and residents alike. It is the commercial heart of Denver’s center city, which makes it a perfect place to host your special event or sampling activity. With millions of visitors each year, the 16th Street Mall is a powerful venue to promote your business, cause or activity.

16th Street Mall Activity Permit Requirements Checklist

  1. Completed application with $25 application fee. ($100 application fee if submitting fewer than 60 days before the activity.)
  2. Certificate of Liability Insurance 
  3. Permit Fee
  4. Signed Use Permit
  5. 501c3 (if applicable)
  6. Activity Layout Sketch (if applicable)
  7. Electrical Equipment Loan Form (if applicable)

16th Street Mall Activity Permitting FAQ

When is a permit required for the 16th Street Mall?

A permit is required for any activities that require equipment to be placed on the ground, if the expected number of attendees is more than 20, or if the activity is expected to last more than three hours.

What happens after an application is submitted?

Once we have received an application with the $25 application fee, it will be presented for mall use committee review and approval on the third Thursday of the month. Following the meeting, you will be notified of the committee’s decision.

Will my application be approved if it is submitted less than 30 days from the activity date?

Due to the nature of our approval process, we strongly suggest submitting the application more than 30 days from the activity date. A $75 late processing fee will be added to the $25 application fee for requests submitted fewer than 30 days before the requested date.

What happens after my activity is approved?

Once your activity has been approved, you will be notified via email. We will send the unsigned use permit for you to review, sign, and send back. Included in your permit is the invoice for the permit fee and a map of your assigned activity location. We will also request copies of your certificate of liability insurance and any other specific required documents at this time.

What is a special activity?

A special activity, hosted to create awareness of a business cause or activity, is stationary in a specified location of the mall that includes furnishings, fixtures, and equipment for a limited duration of time.

Examples include but not limited to:

  • Musical Groups; Instrument, Band, Choir, Orchestra*
  • Performance Groups; Dance, Theater, Literary Arts*
  • Community engagement projects; Collecting Public Opinion, Research*

*Amplification is prohibited unless specifically approved by licensor.

What is a sampling activity?

A sampling activity is an activity hosted to create awareness of a business, cause or activity that involves the free distribution or retail sale of a tangible product, with or without the use of furnishings or fixtures on a specified location on the 16th Street Mall. All food and beverage distributions must be pre-packaged.

Do I need an Activity Permit to film on the 16th Street Mall? 

To film on the 16th Street Mall you will need to get a film permit from the Office of Special Events with the City and County of Denver. The application can be found here.

What are the 16th Street Mall activity permitting guidelines?

The guidelines for the 16th Street Mall activity permit can be found here.

Can I have alcohol at my activity?

Alcohol is prohibited at activities on the 16th Street Mall.

Is amplified sound permitted for activities on the 16th Street Mall?

Amplified sound is prohibited unless specifically approved by licensor. If amplified sound is approved the volume creates a concern, the licensee will be asked to reduce volume or resolve as needed. The licensee must comply with all noise ordinance laws put in place by the City.

Can the permit agreement be edited?

Any changes to the permit outside of any section that does not directly relate to your activity are prohibited.

What are the rules regarding signage?

Temporary signs (sandwich board signs or other) are not allowed on the public right-of-way (median or sidewalk), but may be attached to permit holder’s furnishings, awnings, tables if desired.

Can I use mall fixtures and/or furnishings for my activity?

Licensees may not use Mall fixtures and furnishings. Non-Compliance with this rule will result in a fine.

Are vehicles allowed at activities on the mall?

Vehicles are prohibited under any circumstance.

Can I bring tables for my activity?

Tables are permitted however, all tables must be skirted.

Can I bring my own tents?

We do not provide any tents, you are welcome to bring your own, however, all tents must be white, unbranded, and no larger than 10x10x10. Tent walls are not permitted to be used on the 16th Street Mall. Non-compliance with this rule will result in a fine.

What are the rules regarding samples?

All food and beverage distributions must be pre-packaged.

What are the rates to hold a permit on the 16th Street Mall?

All of our rates are based per 10×10 space. View the rate sheet.

What is the criteria for the certificate of liability insurance?

The required criteria for the certificate of liability insurance can be found here.

Is there a place for load-in/out?

There are no designated load in/out areas. If previously agreed upon, licensee may use a vehicle to deliver props or tents, it can be driven briefly onto the median at the permitted location and then must be immediately removed after unloading materialsAny interference with the bus and transit lanes will be subject to a fine.

What is the maximum set up size for any one activity location on the 16th Street Mall?

The maximum set up size for any one activity location is 10 feet by 10 feet. For activities that require three or more locations, the maximum set-up size is 8 feet by 8 feet.

Can I permit any one activity location that is less than 10×10 feet?

You can use less than 10 feet by 10 feet for your activity, however we do not offer permit rates for activities that use less than 10 feet by 10 feet.

Can I permit any one activity location that is more than 10×10 feet?

Our permit fees are per 10×10 space. If your activity needs more space, you will be charged for another activity location, regardless of if you need another full 10×10 space or not. The activity space, depending on which block of the mall you are on, can expand lengthwise, however because of the transit lanes and public right of way laws, the width cannot be expanded. For example, your activity could use up a 30×10 space, and you will be invoiced for three activity locations.

If my activity is multiple days, can I leave my activity set up overnight?

For multi-day activities, all elements must be removed daily.

What am I responsible for providing at my activity?

The licensee is responsible for providing all elements, their set-up and break-down, and clean-up of permitted location.

What are the rules regarding placement of activities on the 16th Street Mall?

For safety reasons, nothing can be placed closer to the intersection than the first light pole or tree at the end of the block. The activity cannot obstruct pedestrian traffic. A walkway must be left for pedestrians to pass safely beside the activity and must be able to safely cross the street. Licensees must not in any way block the entrance to any building or alleyway nor may they reduce the pedestrian right-of-way to less than ten feet.  A 10-foot clearance must be maintained at all times.

How do you decide where the activity location will be on the 16th Street Mall?

Block preferences, space needs, electrical needs, and the nature of the activity are all taken into consideration when placing activities in their specified location on the 16th Street Mall.

Is there access to electricity?

There are electrical outlets that are free to use on every block of the 16th Street Mall. An electrical whip adaptor is required and may be borrowed with an equipment loan form.