The stunning Coeur d’Alene Resort in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, will be able to attract more and larger events thanks, in part, to an economic impact analysis conducted by EMSI.
Hagadone Hospitality Corporation had intended to add on to the lakeside resort for some time, but when the recession hit, those plans were put on hold. When the market improved, the desire resurfaced—and none too soon.
The resort, which opened in 1986 with 338 rooms, has had to turn away many a larger conference simply for lack of space. Many meeting planners won’t book locations that offer under 500 rooms, said John Barlow, independent consultant and former executive of the Hagadone Corporation, in a comment to The Spokesman-Review newspaper. “The need is real. We have the names of the associations that want to come if we can provide the rooms.”
Hagadone Hospitality had the vision: a new, 19-story tower that would add about 200 rooms, an enlarged conference center with 10,000 extra feet, and a new level in the parking garage. What the corporation didn’t have was objective, third-party data providing details on the economic impact that such an expansion would have on downtown Coeur d’Alene.
“We had done some economic modeling,” Barlow said, “but felt an independent report from a reputable expert would hold more water as to credibility.”
And so Hagadone Hospitality partnered with EMSI in order to conduct an analysis. Just how much would the addition contribute to the local economy?
In a word, $12.42 million per year and 275 local jobs. And that projection was for the first few years only. Once the resort reached full capacity, EMSI estimated its annual contribution would swell to $15.6 million and 362 jobs. Construction alone, calculated to last roughly 16 months, would create or support 633 jobs (the equivalent of $34 million in labor income) and would increase Kootenai County’s gross regional product by $37.8 million.
Brian Points, an economist at EMSI, delivered a presentation at the Coeur d’Alene City Council meeting in July in order to provide these and other key findings from EMSI’s economic impact analysis, helping to gain the city’s 5-1 vote in favor of the expansion.
“The report was indeed helpful,” Barlow said, noting that “the project is very important, and sends a strong message that Coeur d’Alene is proactive and has a positive effect on future growth and development.”
Jerry Jaeger, president and co-owner of Hagadone Hospitality, commended the level of detail and thoroughness in EMSI’s presentation, remarking that it was something non-data geeks could easily understand.
“EMSI developed an outstanding presentation that thoroughly but concisely explained how our resort expansion would positively affect our community and region,” Jaeger said. “It was well researched but presented in a way that people could relate to. We were well pleased.”
The upcoming expansion—the next step in which will be obtaining a building permit—has also garnered the praise of Mayor Steve Widmyer. He told The Spokesman-Review that both Spokane, Washington, only 34 miles west, and Boise, Idaho, 380 miles south, have grown their convention centers, making the market more competitive than ever. “If we want to keep up and compete with Spokane and Boise for those conventions, an additional investment in our community for those conventions is a great thing,” he said.
Prospering communities. Building healthy economies. Creating opportunities for work. These are part of EMSI’s core mission and nothing makes us happier than working alongside clients who pursue the same.
ABOUT THE HAGADONE CORPORATION
Founded in 1968 by Duane B. Hagadone in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho, the Hagadone Corporation is a privately held company with operations that include hospitality, golf, restaurants, real estate, media and publishing, advertising, photography, marine, and aviation. The nearby Coeur d’Alene Resort, an 18-story, 338-room hotel which opened in 1986, is the company’s signature property. The hospitality division, Hagadone Hospitality Co., was co-founded by President Jerry Jaeger and Hagadone Corporation CEO Duane Hagadone.
Economic Modeling Specialists Intl. provides comprehensive, user-friendly labor market data that helps educational institutions, workforce planners, and regional developers (such as workforce development boards and economic development organizations) build a better workforce and improve the economic conditions in their regions.