Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Olympics leave lasting economic impact

A decade ago, Utah became the sports capital of the world during its 16-day run as host of the XIX Olympic Winter Games. The event raised the Beehive State's profile. But it also brought economic impacts that are still being felt throughout the Wasatch front.

Official state estimates of the economic impact showed the Salt Lake Olympics yielded $100 million in profits, $4.8 billion in sales, 35,000 job years of employment and $1.5 billion in earnings for Utah workers during 2002.

Since then, the state's ski and lodging industries have enjoyed record-setting years, with a 42 percent increase in skier visits. Direct expenditures from skiers and snowboarders have increased 67 percent from $704 million in 2002-03 to $1.2 billion in 2010-11.

In addition, numerous national governing bodies for many Olympic sports have relocated to Utah as a result of the Games, including speedskating, bobsled and skeleton, as well as the nordic training facilities. Deseret News