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This is What Success Looks Like

Overtourism-film-still-sign-invasionThis week, the Asheville City Council voted unanimously to impose a one-year moratorium on hotel development. That's what success looks like these days as citizens in popular destinations begin to push back, in their minds, to attempt to "reclaim" their communities.

This isn't, of course, a black and white issue. Those supporting the moratorium are not taking into consideration the long view of how this could stunt the growth of the local economy by limiting future investment in all industries, not just lodging. And, a one-year moratorium (while sounding "reasonable") will likely mean two to three years before new hotel product can come online because of the application, financing and construction windows that follow. And, how many remember when Asheville wasn't the hip darling of the travel consumer? Yeah...missing very few meals over the past decade causes a degree of social amnesia. 

That said, the optics of $25 million of Room Tax being invested each year to continue to increase the very visitation these people blame for ruining their lives has caused moratorium supporters to not consider such nuance...but just see red. Another reason that, for the long term benefit of our residents, we need better words and stories to convey the value of Destination Marketing.

Which is why DMO pros should strongly consider attending Destination International's Advocacy Summit in Madison, November 12-14. 

Bill Geist

Bill GeistBill Geist

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