SAN ANTONIO - A study released Friday by the San Antonio Local Organizing Committee projects a $135 million boost to San Antonio’s economy from hosting the 2018 NCAA Men’s Final Four championship.
The study, conducted by Dr. Steven Nivin, chief economist of the SABÉR Research Institute, estimates the championship will bring 71,000 visitors to the San Antonio area. This will lead to more spending at hotels, restaurants, entertainment venues, retail stores and other local businesses.
The Final Four will be held March 31 – April 2, 2018, in the Alamodome. The building is currently being upgraded extensively for the event, with improvements such as expanded concourses, better interior technology and an increased seating capacity of 70,000.
“2018 will be a big year for San Antonio. Along with the Tricentennial celebration, the Final Four will be a great boost to our economy,” said Sheryl Sculley, San Antonio city manager. “This is where our investments in the Alamodome, Convention Center and other facilities pay off.”
San Antonio last hosted the Final Four in 2008, but next year’s championship is expected to have nearly double the attendance, generating $88 million more than last time. This will be the fourth Men’s Final Four to take place in the Alamo City.
The weekend will feature a number of events hosted by the city, most of them free to the public, in addition to the national semifinal and championship games. The March Madness Music Fest will be a three-day event at Hemisfair Park. In the past, the festival has featured performers such as Rihanna, Maroon 5, Pitbull and Bruce Springsteen.
SALOC, a partnership between the City of San Antonio, San Antonio Sports and UTSA, has generated hundreds of millions of dollars in the local economy as a result of hosting many successful NCAA championships.
Officials also announced Friday that San Antonio will host the Annual Convention of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People in 2018, which Visit San Antonio predicts will generate an additional $10 million for the local economy.
Copyright 2017 by KSAT - All rights reserved.