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Final High Springs Development Plan-2

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Final High Springs Development Plan-2

  1. 1. Tourism Development Plan 2016-2026
  2. 2. Supervising Faculty: Dr. Ashley Schroeder Institutional Sponsor: University of Florida Tourism Development Plan Contributors: Jackie Celona & Erin Dinkel Tania Hernandez Marissa Mosher & Suey Vendrell Sarah Lapp 2
  3. 3. Executive Summary................................................4 Guiding Framework……………………….………...5 Development Plan Objectives..............................................6 High Springs Characteristics.......................................7 Organization Structure................................................8 Vision + Orientation + Value......................................................9 SWOT Analysis............................................10-11 Assets Analysis............................................12- 13 Competitive Analysis............................................14-17 Competitive Comparison..........................................18 Trends Analysis................................................19 Capacity Analysis.................................................20 Destination Life Cycle............................................................21 Risk Analysis............................................22-24 Goal Setting..........................................................25 Objectives....................................................26 Scenarios.................................................27-30 Scenario Evaluation.......................................31 Ideal Scenario........................................................32 Market Analysis........................................................33 Assessments and Plan...............................34-38 Funding.........................................................39 Recommendation...........................................40 Evaluation......................................................41 Works Cited………………………………………….…...42 3
  4. 4. Tourism within Florida is steadily increasing, as demonstrated by the record-breaking number of tourists that visited in 2014. As a booming tourism destination, this provides a huge opportunity for the cities within the state. Through this development plan, we hope to elevate High Springs to its full potential so that it too may benefit from this influx of tourism. This plan breaks down and analyzes High Springs' current assets and then presents several possible development scenarios accordingly. These scenarios demonstrate how the town can be further developed in a manner that will both preserve its historical nature and small town charm while transforming it into an attractive and successful destination. 4
  5. 5. Core Resources and Attractors: • Made up of seven categories: physiography and climate, culture and history, market ties, mix of activities, special events, entertainment, and superstructure. • Physiography and Climate significantly impacts the overall environmental attractiveness of a tourism destination. • Tourism superstructure, Tourism super structure includes: Accommodation facilities, food services, transportation facilities and major attractions. Tourism managers have a high degree of control of superstructure. Supporting Factors and Resources: • Provide a foundation for the success of the destination. • Includes: infrastructure, accessibility, facilitating resources, hospitality, enterprise, and political will. • Each factor is crucial for the success of a destination and allows for people to travel with ease and want to come back. Destination Management: • The management function seeks to increase the appeal of a destination by maintaining proper organization of the staff, customers, and supervisors. • Factors include: marketing, human resource development, and crisis management. Destination Policy, Planning and Development: • Provides a sustainable and competitive plan that fits with the needs and goals of the community. • Includes: the system definition (strategy), philosophy, vision, audit, competitive/collaborative analysis, development, and monitoring and evaluation. Qualifying and Amplifying Determinants: • Can determine the potential of the destination as a competitive location • Determinants include: location, interdependencies, safety and security, awareness and image, cost/value, and carrying capacity Ritchie and Crouch (2003:63) The guiding framework to develop this 10 year tourism plan is taken from the Ritchie and Crouch textbook. This framework is based on the components of Supporting Factors and Resources, Core Resources and Attractors, Destination Management, Destination Policy, Planning and Development, and Qualifying and Amplifying Determinants, 5
  6. 6. The tourism development plan objectives of the points of interest we hope to achieve within the community. To elevate tourism awareness and involvement within the local community To capitalize on opportunities and minimize weaknesses within the town To enhance commercial recreation and leisure for the area To increase tax revenue in efforts to revitalize the town’s economy To develop a framework for sustainable tourism development To implement strategies that benefit the city's infrastructure, residents, and guests To increase the town’s relevancy in a competitive market 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 6
  7. 7. High Springs is a small town located in the northwest corner of Alachua County, approximately 20 miles north of Gainesville, FL. The town’s friendly atmosphere attracts visitors through their unique offerings of art, antiques, and outdoor adventures. Area: 22.05 mi² Population: 3,600 Average Temperature: 68.45°F 7
  8. 8. The organizational structure is the design of the government departments within High Springs. This will be used to implement the 10 year plan. 8
  9. 9. Vision High Springs will be a hub for cultural, educational, and recreational enthusiasts. Through a balance of small-town charm and outdoor adventure, we aim to keep High Springs off the beaten path but on the right track. PhilosophicalOrientation This town boasts a traditional and humble environment that focuses on preserving its historical roots and the importance of local hospitality. ValueProposition High Springs is a small community that embraces its old-fashioned charm and the potential for increased destination value through its natural assets. 9
  10. 10. Strengths •Local springs and state parks +++ •Once known as the antique capital of North Central Florida + •Near Gainesville +++ •Annual art events ++ •Quaint and historic downtown area ++ •Family oriented community + •Commercial recreation tours +++ •TOTAL (+) = 15 Weaknesses •Limited hotel and dining options ++ •Not enough tourism infrastructure +++ •Limited destination marketing +++ •Lack of organized activity ++ •Poor signage +++ •Low current tourism development priority ++ •Lack of cultural diversity + •Appeals to limited market segment ++ TOTAL (+) = 18 Opportunities •Supportive locals for future tourism development ++ •Relatively large land space ++ •Retiring of baby boomer generation +++ •Increase in active elderly lifestyles +++ •Partnerships with local businesses ++ •Accessible location ++ •Creation and development of further social media presence ++ TOTAL (+)= 16 Threats •Hurricane season + •Flooding + •Low income area ++ •Closed for business/empty spaces + •Economy fluctuations ++ •More popular neighboring towns ++ •TOTAL (+)= 9 Key: (+) = minimal importance (++) = moderate importance (+++) = high importance The SWOT analysis is the process of evaluating the Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats of the community and how important they are. 10
  11. 11. Upon conducting the SWOT Analysis, it appears that the city of High Springs presents a WO (weakness-opportunities) scenario. Knowing this, the best option is to eliminate the weaknesses as much as possible, while capitalizing on and developing the potential opportunities. W O In order to begin to eliminate the weaknesses, we must first raise awareness of the importance of tourism development. We could begin by increasing local hotel and dining options, which would not only increase our tourism infrastructure in the process but also potentially broaden the market segment that the town currently appeals to. To combat the lack of signage, we can utilize the opportunity of advertisement through highway billboards, distribution of fliers, social media outlets, etc. By increasing advertisement efforts, we can draw a larger scope of visitors to events held in the downtown area, such as art festivals, live music, and antique fairs. The growing trend of active lifestyles amongst the baby boomer generation can be capitalized upon by highlighting High Springs’ existing core assets and attractors such as the natural springs and preserves. With increased community support of tourism development from residents, the large availability of land can be utilized to create an influx of community activities that attract visitors from surrounding towns. Due to the limited infrastructure offered in the downtown area, local businesses should take the opportunity to partner with one another in order to increase promotions and tourism offerings. We could then market these events through social media, which is currently only utilized on a small scale, leaving it open to be further developed and tailored to the town’s new and improved image. 11
  12. 12. Core Assets and Attractions in the Community Physiography + Climate: • Located in Central Florida • Warm and temperate climate • Flat and wooded with farmland • Three local springs within 10 min. from town Culture + History: • "Antique Capital" of North Central Florida • Friendly and welcoming locals • Quaint, family-oriented culture Mix of Activities: • Water sports • Spa + Leisure • Art Museum • Thrift Shopping • Weekly Farmers Market Special Events: • Santa Fe River Fest – April 17 • Annual Pioneer Days Festival – April 23 • High Springs Christmas Parade + Tree Lighting Entertainment: • Downtown shopping district • Poe, Blue, and Ginnie Springs • O'Leno State Park • Drift Paddle Board Rentals • Adventure Outpost Kayak and Canoe Rentals Superstructure: • Cadillac Motel • Grady House Bed and Breakfast • Rustic Inn Bed and Breakfast • The Great Outdoors Restaurant • True Blue Cafe Market Ties • Business Tie – employment with springs or state park • Tie to Smithsonian exhibit • Families visiting University of Florida The assets analysis shows what the community already has in place in different core assets and attractions. 12
  13. 13. Supporting Factors and Resources Infrastructure: • Railway system built in 1892 • Police and fire department • Government department • Education system • All basic service needs suppliers Accessibility: • Access points via I-75, North Florida Highway • Gainesville Regional Airport (GRA) located few miles outside of city • Multiple rental car services available Facilitating Resources: • Limited human resources • Advisory board • Community Development Agency Hospitality: • Hometown feel • Welcoming residents • Open to tourism expansion Enterprise: • Minimal enterprise/business start-up • Retail • Agriculture • Nature and Wildlife Preservation Political Will • Low as seen by improper signage and superstructure • Lack of DMO or CVB The assets analysis shows what the community already has in place in different supporting factors and resources. 13
  14. 14. High Springs Micanopy Savannah, GA Physiography + Climate: • Located in Central Florida • Warm and climate • Flat and wooded farmland • Three local springs within 10 min. from town • Palmetto and pine scrub • Bison and bear • Warm and temperate climate • Heavy summer rains • Warm and temperate climate • Miles away from Atlantic Coast • Summer rains and light winter snow • Rolling hills • Savannah River Culture + History: • "Antique Capital" of North Central • Friendly and welcoming locals • Quaint, family- oriented culture • 'Mom and pop' feel • Welcoming and antique-driven atmosphere • Open to tourism and visitors • Historic district • Established 1733 • Colonial architecture • Art district (SCAD) • Music and film festivals Mix of Activities: • Water sports • Spa + Leisure • Art Museum • Thrift Shopping • Weekly Farmers Market • Paynes Prairie • Smiley's Huge Antique Mall • Barr Hammock Preserve • Coon Hollo Farm • Delectable Collectibles antique store • Art and museums • Trolley and ghost tours • Local food and bars • Downtown shopping • Historic tours • Biking, kayaking, boating • Parks and "squares" The competitive analysis shows how the different features from High Springs compares to similar communities like Micanopy and Savannah. 14
  15. 15. High Springs Micanopy Savannah, GA Special Events: • Santa Fe River Fest – April 17 • Annual Pioneer Days Festival – April 23 • High Springs Parade + Tree Lighting • Trail of Payne 10k run in March • Spring Cleanup Day- April 2nd • Tree Committee Meeting- June 1st • Micanopy Fall Harvest Festival- October 29th • Savannah Zombie Walk • "State of the Art" weekend • Art March • Savannah Jewish Film Festival • Savannah Music festival • Craft Brew 5k beer race • History on the run- race for preservation Entertainment: • Downtown shopping district • Poe, Blue, and Ginnie Springs • O'Leno State Park • Drift Paddle Board Rentals • Adventure Outpost Kayak and Canoe Rentals • Paynes Prairie • Antique shopping • Pearl's Country Barbecue • Café Risque • Innovative Entertainment- DJ service • Savannah Theatre • Savannah waterfront • Savannah Slow Ride • Local bars and clubs • Downtown shopping • Savannah Derby Devils • Savannah Smiles Dueling Piano Bar Superstructure: • Cadillac Motel • Grady House Bed and Breakfast • Rustic Inn Bed and Breakfast • The Great Outdoors Restaurant • True Blue Cafe • Herlong House Bed & Breakfast • Old Baptist Church • Simonton House • Pearl's Country Barbecue • Old Florida Café • Coffee n' Creme • Marchall House, Azalea Inn and Gardens, Old Harbour Inn • Leopold Ice Cream • The Cathedral of St.John the Baptist • Savannah College of Art and Design 15
  16. 16. High Springs Micanopy Savannah, GA Market Ties: • Business tie- employment at springs or state park • Tie to Smithsonian exhibit • Families visiting University of Florida • Business tie- employment at Paynes Prairie • Families visiting University of Florida • Students at SCAD • Families visiting SCAD • Business ties to port • Business ties to Historic Restoration projects Infrastructure: • Railway system built in 1892 • Police and fire department • Government department • Education system • All basic service needs suppliers • Police and fire department • Education system • Government department • Visitors Center • Micanopy Cemetery • Municipal Wharves • Historic Downtown Squares • Water reclamation • Cemeteries Accessibility: • Access points via I-75, North Florida Highway • Gainesville Regional Airport (GRA) located few miles outside of city • Multiple rental car services available • Access points via I-75 • Lake Wauburg via US 441/13th Street running through Gainesville • Access points via I-95 • Walking paths and bike trails through downtown • Hop-on trolleys through town • Horse and Carriage • Savannah Airport 16
  17. 17. High Springs Micanopy Savannah, GA Facilitating Resources: • Limited human resources • Major and commission department • Advisory board • Community Development Agency • Limited human resources • Advisory board • Community Development Agency • Chamber of Commerce • Tourism Management and Ambassadorship Department • Compliance and Enforcement committee for tours • Tourism Advisory Board • VisitSavannah DMO Hospitality: • Hometown feel • Welcoming residents • Open to tourism expansion • Hometown feel • Original and country restaurants and retail stores • Historic • Welcoming locals • Open and encouraging to tourism • Eclectic Enterprise: • Minimal enterprise/business start-up • Retail • Agriculture • Nature and Wildlife Preservation • Agriculture/farmland • Minimal enterprise/business start-up • Nature and Wildlife Preservation • Retail • Antique • Tourism based businesses • Moderate enterprise/business start-up Political Will: • Low as seen by improper signage and superstructure • Lack of DMO or CVB • Low as seen by improper signage and superstructure • Lack of DMO and CVB • High as seen by proper signage • Active DMO and CVB • Available transportation • Government funding 17
  18. 18. High Springs Micanopy Savannah, GA Core Assets & Attractors LOW LOW MODERATE Supporting Factors & Resources LOW LOW MODERATE The competitive comparison shows the Core Assets and Attractors and the Supporting Factors and Resources within High Springs as compared to Micanopy and Savannah. 18
  19. 19. The trends analysis is the different emerging trends in the tourism industry that we have implemented into the scenarios for High Springs. Trend #1: Staycation Traveling closer to home is ideal. This enhances the way locals perceive their own environment by providing insight into existing attributes. For example, High Springs can embrace this by creating a mailing list, locals-only discounts, word of mouth advertising and training locals to be ambassadors for tours (Fuggle, Lucy). If the staff at Ginnie Springs were locals, the overall morale and atmosphere of this tourism activity would be heightened with genuine knowledge and passion of the nature. Trend #2: Experience Travel As affluent travelers become increasingly acquainted with cultures dissimilar to their own, the desire to see and experience something that is “authentic” and “genuine” has prompted the development of sites, museums, tours, and even hotels that simulate a foreign reality (Arianna Drumond). High Springs is known for its antiques and arts, which can be a major attractor to the tourism market if promoted properly. Visitors find interest in purchasing products that are perceived as traditional and local because it appeals to their desire for authenticity. Trend #3: Adventurous Baby Boomers There is a growing trend within the baby boomer generation in pursuing a more active lifestyle. They having increasingly more disposable income as they reach retirement age and many of them are using this towards living a healthier lifestyle. According to Southern university only 11% of baby boomers face health problems. Also an article by US news stated that the Baby Boomer generation has a "growing interest in travel and recreation." This is an important trend as there are a lot of opportunity for the Baby Boomer generation to participate in recreational activities in High Springs. 19
  20. 20. The capacity analysis consists of the maximum number of tourists High Springs can welcome into the community, without depletion of the physical, economic, and socio- cultural environment. High Springs has limited year-round capacity with a high season during the summer time. In 2013, the population of High Springs was 5, 535 people, so the low capacity is not currently an issue but could very quickly become one in the event of an influx in tourism. The downtown area consists of only one- street and could result in traffic density and lack of parking if the number of visitors increased substantially. The High Springs Museum, Ginnie Springs, and state parks are the most important attractions for entertainment and recreation, but visitors may resist staying overnight due to the low lodging availability. As High Spring attracts most visitors during the summer, this would be the ideal time to hold sporting and recreational events as well as year- round art and music festivals. Despite High Springs’ close proximity to Gainesville, it is still a small-population community and therefore the available human recourses and accommodation facilities must be increased for the sake of supporting potential tourism development. 20 •The High Springs Country Inn - 19 rooms •Cadillac Motel Hotels: •Grady House •Rustic Inn Bed + Breakfasts: Camping: •The Great Outdoors Restaurant •True Blue Cafe (limited seating) •Bev‘s Burgers •The Talented Cookie Company Dining: •Approximately 3,255 people within the working age population (ages 18-64) Human Resources: •Amtrak •Greyhound Bus Lines Public Transportation: • Camp Kulaqua Retreat and Conference Center • High Springs Campground • Blue Springs Park • Ginnie Springs Outdoors
  21. 21. Getz proposed the destination life cycle model. It contains 6 stages that relate to the development of any given location. High Springs is in the Involvement stage. The city is beginning to notice increased visitor revenue, provide accommodation, guided recreation, and kick-start advertising. The life cycle is the different stages a community will go through as a tourism destination. 21
  22. 22. Type of crisis Likelihood Event Oriented Risk 1 Contaminated Water 2 Civil unrest 2 Wildfire 3 Act of violence against tourists 1 Death of a tourist/drowning 1 Animal attacks 2 Deadly heat wave 3 Hurricane 3 Flooding 3 This risk assessment addresses the likelihood of a crisis happening in High Springs. On a 1-5 Likert-type scale: 1= very unlikely 5= very likely 22
  23. 23. Type of Crisis Vulnerability Event Oriented Risk 2 Contaminated Water 3 Civil Unrest 3 Wildfire 2 Acts of violence against tourists 1 Death of a tourist 1 Animal attacks 2 Deadly heat wave 4 Hurricane 5 Flooding 4 This risk assessment addresses the vulnerability of the community to a crisis in terms of what it has in place for protection and safety. On a 1-5 Likert-type scale: 1= low vulnerability 5= high vulnerability 23
  24. 24. Type of crisis Composite score (likelihood + vulnerability) Event Oriented Risk 5+2=7 Hotel bombing 2+3=5 Civil unrest 3+3=6 Wildfire 4+2=6 Act of violence against tourist 3+1=4 Death of tourist/drowning 4+2=6 Animal attacks 5+1=6 Deadly heat wave 3+4=7 Hurricane 4+5=9 Flooding 4+4=8 These scores are the combination of the likelihood of a risk occurring and the vulnerability of the community to the risk. The composite score shows the over all risk factors to High Springs. 24
  25. 25. Our overall goal is to develop sustainable and desirable tourism. By having cultural, educational, and recreational activities that draw visitors, High Springs will be a successful destination. Goals are broad ideal targets we, as the tourism development council, hope to implement for High Springs. 25
  26. 26. The objectives are what we hope to achieve for the community with the implementation of the ten year plan. Create welcoming environment for continuous increase of visitor arrivals Increase signage for accessibility of town Revitalize downtown through historic preservation and art enhancements Create partnerships with businesses in neighboring towns Generate awareness through a strong brand identity Educate local residents on importance of tourism development Strengthen external communication outlets Increase downtown infrastructure and reduce existing vacancies Increase revenue for tourism development 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 26
  27. 27. #1: The Great Escape #2: Outdoor Adventure + Recreation Getaway #3: Historic Art + Music District We developed three possible scenarios that could be the future of High Springs. Each one is based on a different timeline and geared towards a different demographic. 27
  28. 28. High Springs is a historic and charming small town located between Gainesville & Lake City Florida. This historic city is filled with rich culture, history, tradition, recreation, and adventure. The majority of our visitors are retired and looking for a relaxing weekend trip. With health and fitness becoming so important, many of our visitors enjoy the ability to stay active while traveling. Most of our visitors choose our rental bikes to cruise around town and enjoy the beautiful views. Visitors seeking adventure can gear up with water sports equipment at Rum 28 and canoe their way down the Santa Fe River. They can then take a break from the hustle of everyday life and enjoy our popular “yoga at the park” events, held every Saturday afternoon in Memorial Park, located only 3 miles from our historic downtown. History lovers can travel back in time by stopping to explore the unique antiques at Roadside Relics. High Springs is known for the crystal blue springs and breath taking nature views. Visitors can’t leave without participating in one of our many nature tours or recreational activities; such as hiking, kayaking or water diving. The locals will make you feel at home in one of our historic Bed & Breakfast lodging options. This small Florida town will inevitably take you back to the simpler times, while immersing you in the natural beauty that High Springs has to offer. Key Points • Small town with high appeal to adventure seeking baby boomers • Activities such as: • Yoga in the Park • Bike Rentals • Community Game Nights • Antique Shopping • Afternoons spent at parks & springs • Lodging is unique and historic (Bed & Breakfasts) 28
  29. 29. Welcome to High Springs, a city well known for its majestic scenery in true North Florida nature. All year around, Blue Springs, Ginnie springs, and Poe Springs attract many tourists seeking adventure and recreation in the outdoors. With the increasing trend of Multi-Generational Families traveling together, High Springs has taken the opportunity to create a weekend getaway package with a bundle of accommodations and activities that the entire family can enjoy. The Authentic High Springs Adventure package offers the convenience of time and personalization with bundle pricing. This package includes lodging options for either camping or staying overnight in cabins at the springs; bus shuttle services from the Springs to downtown; bike rentals promos; food & beverage discounts at selected restaurants; and special event tickets around downtown. When visitors initially arrive at the Springs, they can choose to participate in a variety of activities such as a Water Obstacle Course, Kayak Racing, or even join in groups for Aqua Zumba. After a day filled with water sports and wildlife spotting, explorers head to Main Street to splurge on a variety of local food delicacies. As the sun sets, visitors head back to the Springs to set up their tents in the campsite; the established cabins at the Springs; or relax in a cozy Bed and Breakfast. Key Points: *Based on a 10 year timeline • Authentic High Springs Travel Package which Includes: • Admission to Springs • Lodging: • Campsites • Cabins • Transportation: • Bus Shuttle • Bike Rentals • Food & Beverage discounts to local restaurants • Playhouse show 29
  30. 30. High Springs is recognized for its presence in the tourism community as a cultural hub of arts, music, and history. Frequented by millennials, baby boomers, and families alike, its Savannah-inspired atmosphere is quaint, charming, and current while maintaining a small community feel and a welcoming environment. In the downtown district one can find a variety of antique malls, art galleries, gift boutiques, coffee shops, bakeries, and restaurants. In addition to these downtown staples, there are also frequent monthly events and attractions. During the weekends, there are historical tours available to tourists who have an interest in educating themselves on the town's roots and extensive history in a fun and entertaining manner. There are also arts and crafts festivals held regularly featuring local artists selling their handcrafted pieces and local musicians playing live music for the attendees as they browse. Art is featured in a unique manner during the town's gallery walks, when all of the town's galleries are open simultaneously and serving light refreshments. It is during this time that artists can also be seen painting intricate murals on the sides of the downtown buildings. As craft beer and street food is a growing trend in today's society, there are also seasonal rallies held in the town center that feature food trucks and local beer vendors from the neighboring Gainesville breweries. When the holidays come around, the town is truly brought to life with the ceremonious lighting of the community Christmas tree as well as the luminaries that line the historic cobblestone streets of downtown on Christmas Eve. Through these various events, which can all be found in the town's monthly event calendar, High Springs generates an ideal level tourism as well as enjoying a stable economic status through the revenue they bring in. High Springs provides the best of both worlds with its blend of historical old town charm and emerging contemporary trends, offering something for everyone in a town that truly embodies the good nature of the south. Key Points: *Based on a 10-20 year plan • Attracts a variety of target market groups • Small town feel with the activities and tourism draw of a successful tourism destination • Unique and diverse events that appeal to all crowds • Town has reached optimum long-term growth (beyond 10 year plan) 30
  31. 31. Objective Scenario #1 Scenario #2 Scenario #3 1. Create welcoming environment for continuous increase of visitor arrivals 2 3 5 2. Increase signage for accessibility of town 3 3 4 3. Revitalize downtown through historic preservation through art enhancements 3 4 5 4. Create Partnerships with neighboring towns 2 4 5 5. Boost community involvement 2 5 5 6. Generate awareness through a strong brand identity 1 3 5 7. Educate local residents on importance of tourism development 3 5 5 8. Strengthen external communication outlets 2 3 4 9. Increase downtown infrastructure 3 4 5 10. Increase revenue for tourism development 2 4 5 TOTAL: 23 38 48 31
  32. 32. The ideal scenario encompasses our vision and objectives for the tourism development of High Springs in the prospective ten years. It is structured to create value for the community while still preserving the existing philosophy of High Springs. 32 10 YEAR IDEAL: Outdoor Adventure + Recreation Getaway For the purpose of a ten year timeline, we have selected this scenario as the most feasible with the highest likelihood of successful implementation. As High Springs already has all the existing natural infrastructure required, it would not be difficult for this scenario to flourish within the time allotted. FUTURE: Historic Art + Music District However, we have also considered the future of High Springs beyond the next ten years and for the town’s long-term sustainability, we foresee it transitioning into the Historic Art + Music District scenario. This quaint, Savannah-inspired plan would encompass the preservation of High Springs’ historical characteristics while continuing to appeal to outdoors lovers and cultural travelers alike.
  33. 33. The market analysis goes over the ideal target market for each scenario. This will be used to efficiently implement the plan. 33 Target Market: "The Great Escape" Scenario 1 aims to attract the "baby boomer generation.” This market segment primarily includes retirees that are highly educated, have an interest in history, and boast high disposable incomes. They travel for pleasure, history, and leisure activates such as historical tours, spas, golfing, and other high end activities. 70% of this target market travel during the weekends and roughly 30% prefer to travel during the week. High Springs could be branded as the ideal place in Florida for retirees to come enjoy a stress free, nature-filled, relaxing weekend. Here they can get away from the constant rush of everyday life and enjoy the simple pleasures found in nature, history, and community. Target Market: “Outdoor Adventure and Recreation Getaway” Scenario 2 is designed to target multigenerational families, including the baby boomer generation, X generation, and Y generation. Families are continuously looking for nearby vacations that everyone in the family can enjoy, without breaking the bank. Google trends reported a 10% increase in “staycation” searches, which makes families the ideal target market for High Springs. (Google, 2014) Target Market: “Historic Art and Music District” Scenario 3 aims to target all generational areas, including millennials. According to Forbes, 86% of millennials wanted to experience the culture and 69% wanted to eat local foods. Millennials are the perfect target market as they will want to embrace the culture and history of High Springs and indulge in the local food and scenery. (Lane, 2016)
  34. 34. This is the action plan and the accompanying steps that need to be taken to make the ideal scenario a reality for High Springs. Step One: Conduct Research Overview: The research process will provide a foundation of knowledge to begin implementing the ideal scenario and allow for a more affective process. Plan: • Introduce plan at CRA meeting • Gather feedback from residents and local business owners • Circulate visitor and resident surveys • Partner with the Alachua County Tourism Development Council to conduct further research on surrounding demographics and feasibility of plan • Create a research committee that can stay current on the latest trends and monitor the evolving opinions of stakeholders Assessment: • Analyze visitor and resident feedback • Create a monthly research report on tourism activity • Monitor continuous involvement on social media (Facebook, Instagram, 34
  35. 35. Step Two: Introduce and Develop Tourism Organizations Overview: This step is crucial in maintaining efficiency of the ideal scenario. These tourism related organizations will assist in making High Springs a sustainable and competitive tourism destination. Plan: • Continue development and involvement of the Parks and Recreation Board and the Plan Board and Historic Preservation • Work closely with Visit Gainesville as the DMO • Create guidelines for new businesses to maintain the historic preservation • Create a small tourism committee that can work with the DMO on a local level • Keep tourism related issues in the CRA agenda. Assessment: • Measure activity done by the tourisms organizations • Gather feedback from the organizations and other stakeholders on progress 35
  36. 36. Step Three: Increase Awareness and Advertise Overview: Through advertising, High Springs can increase their target segment and awareness in the surrounding areas. Plan: • Begin advertising in local surrounding areas through billboards, Gainesville visitor center, and Visit Gainesville DMO. • Create E-Mail updates for interested visitors • Partner with UF to reach a larger market. • Partner with Groupon/Living Social to provide coupons and deals as incentives for people to visit • Increase presence on social media (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.) Assessment: • Compare research reports before advertising to research reports done after advertising. • Compare financial gains after 36
  37. 37. Step Four: Improve Infrastructure and Superstructure Overview: The development of infrastructure is important so that visitors may have easy access throughout the destination. These include transportation, and hospitality related businesses. Plan: • Increase signage leading towards downtown area, springs, parks, and visitor center • Increase availability of public restrooms, particularly near the springs and parks for easy access • Increase ease of transportation. (Shuttles from the springs to downtown, parking, bike racks) • Increase accessibility with hotels/B&Bs via increased signage and easy parking • Possibly introduce horse and carriage rides for downtown/historic area • Maintain historic architecture through established guidelines with the Historic Preservation Board Assessment: • Measure visitor satisfaction with the increased signage • Analyze increase in visitors through monthly research reports 37
  38. 38. Step Five: Product Development Overview: The product development stage is the creative step that will encourage more people to visit High Springs. This will happen through the increase of activities and local events. Plan: • Introduce new events and activities that build upon the ideal scenario • Create special gathering for local farmers market, live music, yoga in the park, rail to trail, recreation, etc. • Provide incentives for local businesses to host special events • Provide incentives for visitors to extend their trips. (Ex: Come for one day at the spring-stay another day for an arts market with live music) • Increase local shops and antique stores to create a downtown shopping district • Tailor events to high and low seasons to increase revenue on off-peak times • Use hotel/B&B promotions to increase the length of visitors stays Assessment: • Measure length of visitors stays • Analyze visitor surveys, TripAdvisor reviews, and social media interactions. 38
  39. 39. Ways that High Springs can fuel their abundant ideas to be a desirable destination. 39 Tourism Development Council (increase bed tax revenue) Cultural, Heritage, Rural, and Nature Tourism Grant Program Small Business Grant Program Federal loans and tax dollars Recommended Funding Measures:
  40. 40. Thoughts on how High Springs can become a superior destination in North Central Florida. 40  Clear, visible signage with distinct city branding and evident sense of place  Local community is aware of and actively involved in tourism expansion efforts  Downtown spaces are no more than 20% vacant  High Springs has an active and informative social media/advertising presence  Update websites to represent existing offerings  Advertise/fully staff the 3 local springs  Expand the number of farmer's market vendors and increase event frequency  Increase campsite lodging infrastructure to meet needs of a broader target segment and increase bed tax revenue  Advertise in local restaurants for community outdoor water sports and activities  Properly train staff to be knowledgeable on the area for questions that tourists may have
  41. 41. Evaluation must be performed every 6 months to ensure that High Springs is remaining on track with the goals of the plan that it is following. 41 Objectives Results Expected 1. Create welcoming environment for continuous increase of visitor arrivals Increased visitor arrivals by 10% annually 2. Increase signage for accessibility of town Visitors are being directed into town center from highway/surrounding areas 3. Revitalize downtown through historic preservation and art enhancements Downtown is a thriving cultural hub 4. Create partnerships with businesses in neighboring towns Local offerings have been increased and therefore meet a greater need 5. Educate local residents on importance of tourism development Locals are supportive and participative in tourism implementations 6. Generate awareness through a strong brand identity Visitors are clear on what they will experience when they visit the town 7. Strengthen external social media outlets Town has a strong, informative, and regularly active social media presence 8. Increase downtown infrastructure and reduce existing vacancies Area has a wide variety of offerings for visitors to select from 9. Increase revenue for tourism development Revitalization is financially sustainable
  42. 42.  Fuggle, Lucy. "The Staycation Trend: 9 Creative Ways to Market Your Tours and Activities to Locals." The Staycation Trend: 9 Creative Ways to Market Your Tours and Activities to Locals. Trekk Soft, n.d. Web. 05 Apr. 2016. <https://www.trekksoft.com/en/blog/staycations-local-travel-market>  Drumond, A. (n.d.). CCTP725: Cultural Hybridity: Remix and Dialogic Culture Contextualizing Authenticity in Tourism: An Examination of Postmodern Tourism Theory. Retrieved April 05, 2016, from  Parks and Recreation: What's happening in High Springs. (n.d.). Retrieved April 08, 2016, from  High Springs. (n.d.). Retrieved April 08, 2016, from  Drumond, A. (n.d.). CCTP725: Cultural Hybridity: Remix and Dialogic Culture Contextualizing Authenticity in Tourism: An Examination of Postmodern Tourism Theory. Retrieved April 05, 2016, from https://blogs.commons.georgetown.edu/cctp-725- fall2013/2013/12/14/contextualizing-authenticity-in-tourism-an-examination-of- postmodern-tourism-theory/  Lane, Lea. (n.d.). Retrieved April 12, 2016, from Travel, U. N. (n.d.). Should You Swap Your Vacation for a Staycation? Retrieved April 12, 2016, from Visit Savannah http://www.visitsavannah.com. (n.d.). Retrieved April 13, 2016Grants. (n.d.). Retrieved April 13, 2016, from http://www.visitflorida.org/resources/grants-insurance/grants/  Ritchie, J. R. B., & Crouch, G. I. (2003). The competitive destination: A sustainable tourism perspective. Oxon, UK: CABI Pub. 42

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