BNHA Heritage Tourism and Economic Impact

Content about Heritage Tourism and Economic Impact

National Heritage Areas (NHAs) are catalysts for economic development in the communities in which they are located. NHAs are a­ffiliated with the National Park Service and are managed by independent Federal Commissions, non-profit groups, or state or municipal authorities. They implement projects through public/private partnerships with a variety of stakeholders, and collaborate with state and local governments to ensure that the regional goals of cultural, historical, and natural resource protection are met. In the process, NHAs strive to improve the quality of life in their regions by fostering the development of sustainable economies.

An economic impact study commissioned in 2012 shows that the 49 NHAs generate a significant impact on regional and local economies. NHAs overall annual economic impact in the U.S. is $12.9 billion, which significantly exceeds the amount of federal funding provided to NHAs. The economic impact is comprised of three main areas: tourism, operational expenditures, and grant-making activities; the majority of impact (99%) is generated by tourism spending.

This includes:

  • $4.6 billion in direct impact (tourist spending, NHA operational expenditures, and grant-making activities), and
  • $8.3 billion in indirect and induced impacts (employee spending and businesses supporting the tourism industry).

2017 UPDATE
The Baltimore National Heritage Area has a direct and indirect annual impact of more than $534 million, supports more than 6,000 jobs, generates more than $38 million in state and local tax revenue, and thanks to partnerships and grant programs supports 3.7 million visitors annually to Baltimore. Hot off the press, the heritage area is proud to present our 2017 Economic Impact Study produced by Tripp Umbach thanks to support from the National Park Service and Alliance of National Heritage Areas.

2017 Economic Impact Study