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Salt Lake City

Problem Solving in Salt Lake City's Convention District

Salt Lake City Convention District

With the halt of business and convention travel due to COVID-19, the Convention District businesses bear significant economic burden. Some 95% of Global Business Travel Association members report having cancelled all domestic travel in 2020. Without the high occupancy percentages, mid-week convention rates and the food & beverage segment, the Convention District hotels have a tough road to recovery. The Salt Lake Convention District hotels had the steepest decline of performance compared to their competitive set and other Salt Lake neighborhoods.

Convention Center

Findings

Year-over-year visitation patterns show a decrease in visitation to the downtown and an increase in visitation to the outer regions of the city. This shows that both residents and visitors are spending more time in the recreational areas and not the downtown.

Salt Lake County Dynamic Visualization

 

Findings

When looking specifically at convention participant behavior using geolocation data, it was found that this audience travels throughout the entire region supporting the tourism community at large.  Meeting and convention-goers spent more time in the downtown supporting local businesses. 

 

Salt Lake County Dynamic Visualization-1

 

Findings

In 2020, the Utah Office of Tourism received $12 million in Cares Act funding. Visit Salt Lake set out to research the best way to utilize these funds to best serve their tourism community. It was identified that the Salt Lake City convention district was hardest hit by COVID due to the cancelation of meetings and events. Visit Salt Lake needed to make a case for their investment. They worked with Zartico to study the best way to support the conference and event sectors of their economy.

Salt Lake County Dynamic Visualization-2

 

Results

Visit Salt Lake turned the intelligence into currency. They were able to convince the state tourism office/legislators to move $2 million of the $12 million Cares Act funds to the convention center districts.

 

REVPAR in the convention district
CONVENTION VISITORS TRAVEL ALL AROUND THE VALLEY
YOY DECLINE IN OVERNIGHT VISITOR VOLUME
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