PARK CITY, Utah – The Park City Chamber and Visitors Bureau sought help from the Global Sustainable Tourism Council (GSTC) to embark on a journey toward a comprehensive Summit County stewardship plan to sustainably develop Park City’s environment, economy, and way of life. The results of this analysis will guide the Chamber/Bureau to facilitate post-pandemic tourism in the Summer and Fall months with its ‘On The Right Trail’ campaign to reframe trail usage.
“Park City Chamber of Commerce is committed to promoting the values of sustainable tourism,” said Visit Park City’s Vice President of Communications, Dan Howard. “In this way, we are communicating with visitors regarding the best way to experience Park City, so our environment is protected. The ‘On the Right Trail’ campaign will be filled with advice regarding the best way to respectfully utilize the area’s 400-mile trail system.”
For two months, GSTC leaders met with local tourism stakeholders and visited venues around Summit County. They evaluated Park City’s status relative to more than three dozen sustainability criteria representing four pillars: governance, cultural resources, environmental assets, and socioeconomic wellbeing.
The results of the GSTC Assessment of Summit County indicated that performance of the four pillars on the 38 total criteria were as follows: 12 had “excellent performance,” 12 had “good performance,” 8 “need improvement,” 3 were at “moderate risk,” and three were at “high risk.” Overall, Summit County earned a score of 2.10/3.00 based on all the Criteria calculated together. Of the four categories of the GSTC Destination Criteria, Summit County is performing best with Socio-Economic Sustainability and Environmental Sustainability. The results indicated room for improvement in criteria relating to Sustainable Management and Cultural Sustainability.
The overarching goal is a community-endorsed sustainability plan that acknowledges how interrelated everything is that makes Park City special – a robust economy, unique way of life, breathtaking natural environment, and a travel experience that draws visitors to return again and again.
Due to the pandemic, ‘On The Right Trail’ was limited to discourage large groups and events. The campaign focused on outdoor settings with small groups of people and families and continues to use the call-to-action of “Learn how to visit safely” at VisitParkCity.com. The Chamber anticipates using this campaign for another two years and re-introducing images/videos representing large group travel and events after the pandemic has been cleared.
In partnership with RRC Associates, a market research company, the Park City Chamber/Bureau will conduct a Summer & Fall Guest Study. This will be the first update of this valuable guest data since 2017 and post-pandemic. The study will be conducted at various Park City/Summit County locations, including Historic Main Street, resort base-areas, Utah Olympic Park, and key trailheads. A report-out of this data will be shared with Member Partners in early December, just in time to start developing plans for next summer and fall.
The Chamber expects a sustainable and beneficial Summer season for its business and community members. Learn more about the ‘On The Right Trail’ campaign here and the benefits of being a Chamber member.