The Commission has worked with Alta Planning + Design to collect GIS mapping data representing the region’s existing tourism infrastructure including: outdoor activities, cultural landmarks, downtown centers, recreation/leisure locations, food/beverage sources, historic sites, accommodations, music venues, , farm locations, bike and pedestrian infrastructure, and more.
Alta has provided the Commission with the data sets needed for future groups to complete the asset mapping process. We feel it is essential that local tourism stakeholders be the ones to turn the asset mapping data into a polished asset map. After all, the Isothermal Regional Economic Development Strategy calls for it! Currently, no local input has been integrated into the draft tourism asset map. Stakeholders will meet soon to collect ideas, corrections, and other input.
Within the Economic Development Strategy: Goal 2, Strategy T.3: Conduct Regional Asset Mapping of the Tourism Industry calls for a tourism consortium to develop a marketing plan for the region’s tourism assets and establish an evaluation tool to measure the impact of the hospitality and tourism industry. The data collected will make it possible for the future group to create an asset map which they can use to assist in developing a marketing plan, public awareness campaign, and evaluation tool for the region’s tourism industry. The Commission will soon work with the stakeholders in the tourism industry to develop the tourism consortium.
The sources used in the asset mapping process include: NC Wine (ncwine.org), National Forest Maps, InfoUSA, Isothermal Regional Bicycle Plan, County GIS data, Rutherford Outdoor Coalition, Blue Ridge Heritage Trail Brochure, National Register of Historic Places (NHRP), Asheville Guide Book, NC Barbeque Society, NCDOT, NC Center for Geographic Information and Analysis, NC Natural Heritage Program, and others.
The Commission will soon begin working with tourism industry stakeholders to establish a tourism consortium. The Isothermal Regional Economic Development Strategy can be found at this page. The asset mapping data can be viewed and interacted at the green link above.
While viewing the data, feel free to brainstorm ways it can be utilized to serve your needs, identify things that are missing, and provide any other suggestions, comments or concerns to Project Manager Ben Farmer or Senior Planner Karyl Fuller.