What Are The Arts Worth To A City?

Salt Lake City is at a crossroads as it prepares to make a decision on whether the city should fund a new downtown cultural district, which would involve building two new theatres in the hope of drawing more people (and their money) into the urban core. A consultant’s report confirmed what some supporters of the plan believe, that a cultural district could generate between $12 and $22 million annually in ticket sales alone. However, the same report states flatly that far from being a money-maker, the district would be unlikely ever to turn a profit, and would probably require constant subsidy to stay afloat.