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Wichita City Council to consider tourism district

Wichita City Council to consider tourism district

By George Lawson. CREATED Jan 14, 2014

The Wichita City Council will hold a public meeting on March 11 on the idea of creating a tourism district that would raise additional money for tourism and convention marketing and promotion efforts.

The Tourism Business Improvement District (TBID) is already in place in other cities around the country. It would establish a flat fee to be added to hotel rooms, and the revenue would be used to increase convention advertising in key publications and in digital advertising outlets. The fee would be 2.75 percent on all hotel sleeping room night rentals for hotels with 50 rooms or more.

A planning committee was created last fall to work on the boundaries of the district and the costs and services involved.

Matt Dolan, manager of the Hilton Garden Inn in northeast Wichita, said that hotel owners are supporting the district. He said it will help raise awareness of Wichita and bring more convention and tourism business to the community.

The Go Wichita Convention and Visitors Bureau is estimating the district would help increase hotel occupancy by 6 percent, with a growth of $12 million in hotel revenue. The funds raised by the TBID would be used to enhance Go Wichita's marketing efforts.