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What is a Destination Master Plan?

A destination master plan is a 10-year strategic road map to optimize how visitors can benefit the greater local community. Collectively, the travel, tourism, hospitality, and event industries are a powerful economic pipeline with the ability to support an extremely wide and inclusive variety of local people, businesses, and organizations in the destination.

The primary goal of a destination master plan is to increase overall visitor spending and attract more investment and talent from outside the community — and keep that in the community. Most everyone agrees that increasing the amount of incoming revenue and expertise into a destination is a good thing, as long as it's as inclusive as possible. That level of agreement is critical because it provides a foundation for building consensus in the region, which is key for ensuring people from all walks of life support the strategies put forth in the plan.

The way to accomplish that goal of increasing incoming dollars and people is by aligning the public, private and civic sectors around a shared vision for the future. The more that government, community, and travel industry leaders work together, the better that is for all segments of residents. It leads to providing a wider variety of jobs, increases the local tax base, helps fund community amenities and services, supports special events, attracts corporate investment and relocation, attracts students, and improves overall quality of life, etc.

A destination master plan is a blueprint for that. It provides a prioritized structure and methodology for improving alignment among elected and appointed officials, industry stakeholders, community groups, and residents.

The key strategic pillars in the plan include initiatives and action items related to: destination development and placemaking, destination marketing and brand development, community engagement and support, and data collection and distribution. Everything in the final master plan is based on extensive community and industry stakeholder input to ensure that as many people as possible have an opportunity to guide the future of their neighborhoods and cities.