Rarely do occupancy limits get brought up in casual conversation the way they have in past weeks, and Gov. Greg Abbott stoked the fires with another executive order last week.  

Abbott has been clear as of late how much he wants to avoid business closures, but last Friday's order closed bars to customers again and will limit restaurant occupancy. 

Limits for businesses aren't simple calculations. In Denton, they're based on part of an international building code adopted in 2015 that uses square footage, room type, seating room and other variables to determine the maximum number of people who could safely exit an area. 

Employees aren't counted among the occupancy limits for most businesses, per Abbott's order. 

Patios are included in local calculations, and the number of people typically seated in a bar or restaurant isn't, so some of the numbers might seem a bit off.

For instance, outdoor seating and plenty of breathing room give Armadillo Ale Works a total occupancy of 506 people, according to a list last updated by city officials on May 4.

In theory, that means right around 253 customers could have legally been inside, provided they could find a seat, from June 3 until last Friday afternoon. 

The Bearded Monk, with significantly fewer square feet, would have capped out at 13 customers, per the city listing.

Restaurants were able to operate at 75% capacity until June 29, at which point they had to drop down to 50%. That means Barley & Board, in theory, could sit 143 people at a time until June 29, at which point that number dropped to 95.

What do you want to know? Email your question for Insight Denton to pheinkel-wolfe@dentonrc.com.

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