SALT FLAT A new National Park Service report shows that 243,000 visitors to Guadalupe Mountains National Park in 2021 spent $16.8 million in communities near the park, a press release stated.
That spending supported 234 jobs in the local area and had a cumulative benefit to the local economy of $20.7 million.
“People travel from around the world to visit Guadalupe Mountains National Park, and we are grateful for the hospitality and support shown by the people of West Texas and southern New Mexico,” Superintendent Eric Leonard stated in the press release. “Economic activity is only one way to measure park visitors’ experiences here in the region, but this study demonstrates that visitors are inspired by places like Guadalupe Mountains National Park in ways that can benefit rural communities.”
The peer-reviewed visitor spending analysis was conducted by economists at the National Park Service and the U.S. Geological Survey. The report shows $20.5 billion of direct spending by more than 297 million park visitors in communities within 60 miles of a national park.
This spending supported 322,600 jobs nationally; 269,900 of those jobs are found in these gateway communities. The cumulative benefit to the U.S. economy was $42.5 billion.
As for the economics of visitor spending, the lodging sector had the highest direct effects, with $7 billion in economic output nationally. The restaurants sector was had the second greatest effects, with $4.2 billion in economic output nationally.
Report authors also produce an interactive tool that enables users to explore visitor spending, jobs, labor income, value added, and output effects by sector for national, state, and local economies. Users can also view year-by-year trend data. The interactive tool and report are available at the NPS Social Science Program webpage: https://www.nps.gov/subjects/socialscience/vse.htm
To learn more about national parks in Texas and how the National Park Service works with local communities to help preserve local history, conserve the environment, and provide outdoor recreation, go to www.nps.gov/TEXAS.
For more information about Guadalupe Mountains National Park, visit www.nps.gov/gumo.