Analysis shows 1.5 million visitors spent millions at Buffalo National River
As more people turn to the outdoors in the midst of a pandemic, peer analysis has shown they are spending money visiting the Buffalo National River.
The National Park Service released a recent report that showed 1.5 million visitors spent $ 66.3 million in communities near the park and that the spending helped support 960 jobs in the area in 2020. This has helped makes a climactic benefit to the local economy equivalent to $ 76.1 million.
Buffalo National River attracts visitors from across the country, officials say.
“During the COVID-19 pandemic, even more people came to enjoy the river and the outdoors. It’s great to see our local communities benefit from the positive economic impacts of park visitors, ”Superintendent Mark Foust said via a press release. “We are working hard with partners in the Buffalo River watershed to conserve the National River for the benefit of future generations of visitors, especially at a time when park attendance increases.”
The parks service, along with the US Geological Survey, scoured the country and found $ 14.5 billion directly spent by more than 237 million park visitors in areas within 60 miles of a national park. The spending supported 234,000 jobs nationwide, of which 194,400 were found in these entry communities.
“The cumulative profit for the US economy was $ 28.6 billion,” according to NPS.
The accommodation sector saw the highest direct effects of national spending at $ 5 billion. Restaurants come in second with $ 3 billion.
Accommodation spending has supported more than 43,100 jobs and more than 45,900 restaurant jobs across the country, per NPS. Visitor spending in recreation industries supported more than 18,100 jobs and spending in retail supported more than 14,300 jobs.
A complete overview of visitor spending, jobs, labor income and more can be found on NPS.gov or by visiting https://www.nps.gov/subjects/socialscience/vse.htm.