This month in Moments of Clarity, find more examples of how data storytelling can help you visualize your destination's competitiveness. Learn how Clarity of Place is enhancing its capacity to serve places. And see what we're reading in celebration of Earth Day and what meetings and conferences you should attend.
Moments of Clarity is proud to bring you data and insights to help you leverage your place-based assets. Your residents, businesses, and visitors will benefit.
Expanding Our Capacity to Bring Industry Insights
In early April, we were pleased to announce that Clarity of Place has been acquired by Longwoods International. Joining the Longwoods family allows us to strengthen our capacity for research and leverage the Longwoods 45-year track record of delivering best-in-class market research and intelligence for destinations and the tourism industry.
Our new tool, PlaceBalance, gives you a comprehensive look at your data. Its insights help destination organizations manage more efficiently and effectively.
PlaceBalance is a proprietary database/data model powered by FirmoGraphs that we will use to assess how a destination is using its place-based assets, such as hospitality infrastructure, attractions, recreation assets, and civil infrastructure, to service guests/visitors. It also shows whether visitor use is impinging on use of these assets by residents and the greater community. We introduced it at the Simpleview Summit in April.
View our quick PlaceBalance "explainer" video.
Tools and Techniques
Places that are walkable, or pedestrian-friendly, are good for local tourism development. Walkable places are accessible, connect nearby attractions and visitor experiences, and promote environmental sustainability. Walkability depends on a variety of factors, such as the presence of sidewalks, crosswalks, pedestrian signals, and traffic volume. How walkable is your community? The Esri ArcGIS tool can help you find out.
Our partner FirmoGraphs, a business intelligence and data science firm, applied the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) National Walkability Index to tourism-related infrastructure in Seattle Southside. This tool measures the relative walkability of the nation’s communities.
A walkability map can be used by planners and policymakers to identify areas for improvement. The map helps visualize multiple factors, such as the distance to amenities, street connectivity, and the quality of the pedestrian environment. GIS can also be used to identify areas where improvements are needed to enhance walkability, such as the addition of new sidewalks or crosswalks.
The image is of the Seattle Southside region, whose member cities include Tukwila, SeaTac, and Des Moines. It shows tourist locations such as entertainment venues, shopping centers, restaurants, museums, schools, lodging, airports, etc. and their proximity to one another.
By using GIS to understand where visitor assets are located, Seattle Southside can advocate for more pedestrian-friendly environments that will encourage visitors to explore more of the community. Communities can leverage the improved walkability to support positive health outcomes, reduce traffic congestion, and create safer, more accessible spaces for pedestrians.
What We're Reading
In honor of spring and Earth Day, our team handpicked a few articles as to demonstrate how the tourism industry is working to ensure travel is environmentally responsible. We're also include two articles on place-making in dowtowns and in the metaverse.
Four examples show how parts of the tourism industry are investing in people and the environment to protect and restore ecosystems, as well as support the well-being of their local communities and tourism industry.
Findings from Envisioning Tourism in 2030, a new report by the Travel Foundation, describes how travelers are changing their habits to lessen their impact on the destinations they visit and enjoy.
In September 2022, our clients and friends in Fort Myers, FL, were hit by Hurricane Ian, a Category 5 storm that inflicted more than $1 billion in damage to the state. Communities in the Fort Myers area were significantly impacted, as were the destination partners and tourism industry. Learn how Tam and her team are supporting efforts to build back the community.
As the “metaverse" forms, it will be vitally important for destination leaders to stay attuned to the options it provides beyond websites for destination organizations, stakeholders, and customers.
Meetings and Conferences
Check out these meetings and events that can help you better support your destination and its economic development. The Clarity of Place team is planning to attend the meetings marked with an asterisk.
- U.S. Travel Association's IPW - May 20 - 24, 2023
- City Nation Place Americas - June 7 - 8, 2023
- Destinations International Annual Convention - July 18 - 20, 2023*
- USTA Educational Seminar for Tourism Organizations (ESTO) - August 19 - 22, 2023*
- TACVB Annual Conference - August 28 - 31, 2023
- Visit Florida Annual Florida Governor’s Conference on Tourism - September 6 - 8, 2023
- UMCVB Annual Upper Midwest Convention and Visitors Bureau Fall Conference - September 11 - 13, 2023
- International Economic Development Council (IEDC) Annual Conference – September 17-20, 2023
- Colorado Governor's Tourism Conference - September 27-29, 2023*
- International City/County Management Association (ICMA) Annual Conference – September 30 – October 4, 2023*
- Destinations International Advocacy Summit - October 10 - 12, 2023*
- TTA Annual Texas Travel Summit - October 16 - 18, 2023
- MCE Music Cities Convention - October 18 - 20, 2023