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Home » Library » Heritage Rail Trail County Park User Survey and Economic Impact Analysis

Heritage Rail Trail County Park User Survey and Economic Impact Analysis

In 2007, 85% of surveyed visitors to the Heritage Rail Trail County Park, a 21-mile corridor in York County, PA which connects with the 20-mile North Central Rail Trail in Maryland, purchased hard goods (defined as bike, bike accessories, auto accessories, shoes or clothing) in conjunction with their trail use, at an average cost of $367/person. Seventy-two percent of survey respondents purchased soft goods (water, soda, candy, ice cream, lunches, etc.) with an average expenditure per person per trip of $12.66.
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Survey & Economic Impact Findings:

  • In 2007, 89.6% of the sample responded that their use of the Trail had influenced a purchase of "hard goods" items including bikes, bike supplies, auto accessories, shoes, clothing and camping gear.
    • The average of these "hard goods" purchases was $367.77.
    • With 400,00 trail users in 2007, and an average life span of six years for "hard goods" purchses, this equates to $2,085,514 in trail related revenue.
  • 79.1% of the sample responded that their use of the Trail had influenced a purchase of "soft goods" including drinks and food items on their most recent visit to the trail. Even though most of the users live in York County and could bring water or a sandwich, they find it more convenient to purchase these items during the course of their trail experience.
    • The average of these "soft goods" purchses was $12.86.
    • With 400,000 trail users in 2007, this equates to $4,068,903 in trail related revenue.
  • 12.5% of the sample indicated that their trail visit included an overnight stay.
    • The average expenditure per night was $51.13.  On the extremes were those who stayed for free with a friend or relative and those that stayed at a hotel.

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Last modified by Nate Lotze

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