Study finds Rock Hall has $199 million annual economic impact

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CLEVELAND – The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and Museum generates $199 million in total economic impact annually in Cuyahoga County, according to the findings of an economic impact study.

The study, conducted by Tourism Economics and released Tuesday, found visitors to the iconic museum spent $127 million directly last year on-site and at other businesses, supporting 1,872 jobs throughout the county. It generated nearly $13.4 million in state and local tax revenue, according to the study.

“One of the reasons people come to the Hilton or to the Convention Center is because of this building. It’s because of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame,” Cuyahoga County Executive Armond Budish said.

2017 was the Rock Hall’s busiest year since it opened in 1995, drawing about 568,000 visitors, a 4.6 percent increase from 2016 and its third consecutive year of record-breaking attendance. The study found about 4 out of 5 visitors came from outside the region, and 60 percent of Rock Hall visitors listed it as their top reason for visiting Cleveland.

“The hope is when they come here, they also go to the Art Museum or the West Side Market or to an Indians game or something else, but the reason for visiting was the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame,” said Rock Hall CEO Greg Harris.

Harris credited the museum’s growing popularity to ongoing upgrades. The Hall of Fame portion of the building is being reconstructed on the third floor and is set to open ahead of the 2018 Induction Ceremony being hosted in Cleveland next month.

“One of the reasons why I believe we’re seeing double-digit growth is because of the new things we’re bringing on every year,” Harris said.

This year’s induction, being held on April 14 at Public Auditorium, sold out quickly. It’s projected to draw thousands of people to Cleveland and have at least a $16 million economic impact, according to Harris. He said the media impact from worldwide recognition for the Rock Hall and Cleveland is expected to equate to about $30 million.

“It’s a global event,” Harris said.

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