In part of an effort to help direct tourists and visitors to the many events Boulder City hosts every year to local businesses, the city, (in conjunction with the Chamber of Commerce), is instituting measures both old-school and tech-driven.
The city refers to the effort as “wayfinding” and funding was approved for a study in the 2022 budget. The study was complete in fiscal year 2023, which ended on June 30. Funding to implement some of the recommendations was approved for the FY 2024 budget.
“There were several recommendations, including providing banners in the downtown area to highlight the historic district of the community,” said Community Development Director Michael Mays in his annual report to the City Council as part of their Oct. 24 meeting.
Mays also highlighted, “the creation of a website and QR code, which will allow tourists to be able to go to the entrance of a business or to one of our kiosks, scan the QR code and instantly get access to information about local restaurants, local antique dealers, where they can go for adventure tourism activities. This will not only show them the different options, but give them directions to where those businesses are located to help tourists find their way to our local businesses to fully enjoy the activities in Boulder City.”
Mays reported that the city would be working with the Chamber of Commerce to roll out the QR codes and finish development of the website over the next month.
“By the holidays,” he said, “businesses and tourists can take full advantage of this new tool to encourage economic development.”
Mays reported that the website was a collaboration between Development Coordinator Raffi Festekjian and the Boulder City Chamber of Commerce.
Another effort to make Boulder City more visitor-friendly includes highlighting parking availability through additional signage, Mays said.
Next steps in the process of implementing the wayfinding improvements will include a campaign to educate businesses about the improvements.
“Partnering with the Chamber, Raffi Festekjian will be meeting with the business community in the next few weeks to hand out QR codes and promote the program,” said City Manager Taylour Tedder. “The City Council understands the importance of investing in efforts that help local businesses and tourism. This is especially welcome as we are approaching the holiday season.”
In a press release, the city reported that small, local businesses support local jobs, citing data from an American Express study saying that for every ten jobs at a small business, another seven are supported in the local community.
“The Chamber appreciates the support we receive from City Council and city staff,” said Jill Rowland Lagan, president of the Boulder City Chamber of Commerce. “Here in Boulder City, about 85-percent of the businesses are small, so being able to work with other businesses on marketing and promotion is critical to our success.”
In an other part of Mays’ presentation, he highlighted redevelopment grants, which the city began five years ago, “to help encourage reinvestment in the community.” Since that time, more than $350,000 has been dispersed, more than $102,000 of that in fiscal year 2023.