Super Bowl matchup ‘touchdown’ for city, experts say

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The two teams traveling to Indianapolis for this year’s Super Bowl should give the city the matchup it favors, at least from a business perspective.

Local fans might not be crazy that the New England Patriots, a big rival of the Indianapolis Colts, are facing the New York Giants for a chance to claim a fourth National Football League championship in the past 10 years.

But from an economic-impact standpoint, the game on Feb. 5 presents a better opportunity for local establishments to maximize revenue than if the Baltimore Ravens or San Francisco 49ers had advanced, experts contend.

The NFL estimates Indianapolis will draw 100,000 to 150,000 visitors who could spend $200 million over a 10-day span.  

So, hosting a Super Bowl is a huge benefit, no matter which teams play. But hospitality industry experts such as Robert Tuchman, president of New York-based event-planning company Elite Experiences, say there’s no disputing that followers of the Patriots and Giants travel much better and have deeper pockets than fans of the teams they defeated.

“It's absolutely a home run--Or should I say touchdown?--for the people of Indianapolis,” he said. “As long as they can put up with a bunch of obnoxious New Yorkers and New Englanders, it will be good.”
Tuchman, whose firm compiles packages for major sporting events, said he's already being “flooded” with requests from fans eager to travel to Indianapolis.

Most of New York City’s population is made up of Giants fans. The fact that this year’s game will feature a rematch of the 2008 Super Bowl, when the Giants beat the Patriots 17-14, only fuels interest, he said.

That game was played in Glendale, Ariz., much farther from the East Coast than Indianapolis, which also bodes well for the central Indiana region expecting to capitalize on the crush of visitors.

“They certainly will come and they will spend, there’s no doubt,” Tuchman said of Giants fans. “The same thing with New England. They’re both very corporate towns, and they have fans all over the country.”

Conversely, Baltimore’s fan base is smaller than New England’s, and San Francisco’s doesn’t travel as well as New York’s, he said.

Other experts agree that a Giants-Patriots matchup will benefit Indianapolis, but are a bit more tempered in their optimism.

Mark Rosentraub, a University of Michigan professor of sports management, said the game will be a sellout no matter which teams are playing, and the downtown hotels still will be booked.

“Having the teams a bit closer, with notable fan bases that travel well and spend well, you’ll probably see a minor increment over what might have happened,” he said. “But nothing that would be super-dramatic.”

It’s often easy to focus too much on economic impact, he argued.

“And that’s where you try to remind people that spending doesn’t translate into regional growth,” Rosentraub maintained. “The Super Bowl is great. But don’t assume that every dollar spent literally stays in the city of Indianapolis.”

Michael Casinelli, owner of Marketing Information Masters Inc. in San Diego, said no firm data exists to show which teams will create the best economic impacts for host cities. But, he said, there's no disputing the game should create plenty of attention for the city.

"You've got two marquee quarterbacks in [Eli] Manning and [Tom] Brady," he said. "The hype around this game will be tremendous."
Tickets for the game are commanding big bucks already on the aftermarket. StubHub is asking $2,500 to $20,000 each, with a face value of $800 to $1,200. The holders of two corporate suites are asking for much more on the website: $704,724 and $882,375.


  • INDY
    Indy is a great town. I travel all across the US, and each town is unique. However, if you had to live somewhere Indy has it all, is clean, has little crime, and the people are great. I hope they make a killing on the SuperBowl.
  • We Will See
    It will be interesting to see if the East Coast Media savages Indianapolis or not. They will take every chance to paint us as hicks if the opportunity presents itself. Ask Jacksonville what the Philly and New England media did to them at Super Bowl XXXIX.
  • No Win
    Do you know what Chicago, Philly, New York, Cleveland and Pittsburgh have in common? They're all cities that have not hosted Super Bowls (NY gets one next year, it's true) but have world class symphony orchestras. Guess what...we have one too. You don't need to host a Super Bowl to be held in high esteem...just show strong support for the arts and the culture of your city and your community...which we quite frankly do not. All the money that got dumped into acquiring and hosting this Super Bowl would have been better spent at home on things that are clearly more important - and actually contribute more to a city's image and economy (the arts contribute $500 million/year. We may not even break even on this Super Bowl). If we want' to stop being seen as hayseeds "shooting hoops out the barn" and racing around in circles, we have to start acting like it.
  • Missing Out
    According to the Arts Council of Indy, on an annual basis, the arts make our economy stronger by generating an estimated $500 million in economic activity, employing 15,000 full time jobs, and by contributing $52 million in state and local tax revenue. Annually. Yet the city of Indianapolis contributes only about $175,000 to local arts organizations, annually (a total of $1.3 million are contributed to Arts Organizations by the city AND state). Yet the city spent 10 times more than that on just the presentation to acquire a Super Bowl that won't come even close to delivering an economic return. Basically, we are neglecting the 4.1 million people who support local arts (Indy Symphony, IRT, museums, etc.) and spending millions to entertain a couple hundred thousand people for a weekend. It just doesn't add up. Sorry.
  • Mr George Evans,
    Your right, next time Indy is given a huge opportunity they had never had the amenities to previously draw in we will just tell them we appreciate the offer but would rather keep on keeping on as Naptown. All that money invested into our downtown landscape wasn't really done for a reason anyways...(yes, this is sarcasm)
    • Read Closer
      That comment was made by a New Yorker.
    • Interesting comment
      I'm not sure if the "gentleman" who called us Midwesterners "hicks" is aware that the person who wrote the article about the "obnoxious New Yorkers" IS FROM New York. Those comments weren't made by us "hicks." But I guess you proved him wrong with your lovely language and threats, Mr. Yankee Fan!
    • Only about 4 days
      While talking with friends from cities that have hosted previous Super Bowls, that the whole thing really only ramps up starting on Thursday before the game and up to the game itself. They say you will start seeing some media folks rolling in this week to start early set up. Teams won't start showing up until Sunday or Monday. Thursday is when most fans will start rolling into town and the only ones that will be around on Sunday will be those actually going to the game. The rest will actually start flying home on Sunday to work on Monday. So, if the actual thing doesn't really get going until Thursday, I can't see the economic impact being all that big.
    • LSome economists say Indy Will Be Big Loser Hosting SB
      For your consideration http://www.ogdenonpolitics.com/2011/12/sports-economist-says-indianapolis-is.html And this is just one of any number of articles you'll be able to find talking about the reality of hosting a Super Bowl. Thanks for the discourse folks!
    • Review The Data Later
      It's exciting in the fact that Indianapolis is hosting its very first Super Bowl. I am not a sports guy, but I will most certainly be checking things out because how often does a Super Bowl come to the town that you are living in? After Super Bowl is over, then we can start looking at what it cost to bring the event here and then what the direct cost benefits were...as time goes by we can calculate the residual effects. I would say that at least by May 2012, we should be able to have a good idea of the ACTUAL ROI of Indianapolis hosting the Super Bowl. It's going to be here. It's going to happen and in a few weeks, it wil be over. Let's enjoy the ride!
    • For Daytime Parking
      Even people with parking leases downtown are being asked to vacate their lots by 6:00 pm or pay the increased parking with some, indeed, charging $150/day. There are studies that show Super Bowls can actually DECREASE the per capita income depending on the cost to put on the event. Dallas last year estimated a $651 million windfall with the actual numbers - with the Steelers and Packers in the game – estimated at around $150 million. Bottom line, economic impact numbers of events like this are often padded by a factor of 10x. Like I said, I agree that given the audience and hoopla, it's a great showcase for a great convention city. But Indy won't attract like a true "destination" city (Miami) and Pats and Giants fans don't travel. Those are the facts...interpret them as you will. I for one will pass on the self indulgence, the over indulgence and the hangover that's going to come the "morning after." How much did we pay for the pole barn? You have to factor that into the cost of what Indy paid for the Super Bowl. Like I said, there are a lot better things the city could have spent its money on. That's a fair observation, not a criticism by any stretch. I think we're going to look good on TV a week from Sunday. I'm just not sure that alone is worth the cost.
    • Super~
      There's no doubt that the superbowl is and will give Indy a great deal of media mentions in the USA (although the rest of thw world cares little about this game). The local media continues to go way overboard on this though, calling it a "super celebration". Maybe some downtown businesses and tip-loving workers are celebrating, but there's no mass celebration going on in the city. The majority of locals will do everything possible to avoid the driving and parking nightmare in the downtown area during this event. If the Colts were in the game, THEN it would be somewhat of a celebration. They are not, so for most Hooiers it will be a superbowl in front of the tv, like every other.
    • ?
      Parking is only $2 and that comes with shuttle service if you by in advance. That is CHEAPER than it normally is! Who cares if the money stays here or not. I'm just excited for Indianapolis to finally be in the spotlight. This is a wonderful opportunity for our city!
    • Website for Parking
      P.S. Here's where you must RESERVE for the $2 parking... https://sbxlvi.clickandpark.com/parkandride
    • Parking downtown
      Nobody will have to sleep on a floor for the week for lack of parking! There are lots that charge $2 a day, right in downtown...check the Park N Ride site for full details.
      • I Admit It...I'm A Steelers Fan
        But the numbers are correct. Neither New York nor New England will bring the kind of revenue Pittsburgh and Green Bay would have. And more than 70% of all revenue goes right back out the door to chain restaurants, corporations, hotel chains etc...the actual economic benefit is actually quite negligible considering the cost and the inconvenience. I agree...it's a good showcase of a great convention town...but I'd rather have seen the money that went into attracting this game go into the arts (Indy spent more on the presentation than it does on support of the arts, locally, in 10 years!). Not hating at all. Just pointing out that all that glitters is not gold.
      • You Can Do That With A Good Ad Campaign.
        And for a lot less than what it cost to attract the game here for one week.
      • OK, cans then.
        This according to a server at a downtown pup who gets to sleep on her friend's floor for the week because she can't afford the parking.
        • NEW BUSINESS
          Where we benefit is that businesses from Boston and New York will see that Indianapolis is a very good town to live in and to run a business from and will consider them as an option. Baltimore and San Fran do not bring that. This is very good.
          • Hater?
            George sounds like the kind of small-town, small-minded hater people assume Indy is full of. This game will bring in QUITE large numbers of fans from two cities that have the nation's highest costs-of-living who will be glad for the opportunity to experience a Super Bowl in a great town where they won't spend nearly as much as they would in other major markets by comparison. Indianapolis AND Indiana in general need all the financial help we can get right now and this is an fun and exciting way to do just that. Step into the millenium, Sir, and embrace progress and change - for the love of God, it's only 10 days of minor inconvenience out of what is most likely an otherwise hum-drum existence. Have fun in Orlando - your presence won't likely be missed!
          • George is part of the 1% who does not care about sports and who does not think the Superbowl is worth it. George do us a favor and stay in Orlando when your sales meeting is over.
            • Sun King Bottles
              Sun King doesn't come in bottles, George.
              • The ARTS????....
                Wow, somebody got beat up in high school.
              • I have a hunch George Evans is NOT part of the Superbowl host committee.
                Who pooped in your Easter Basket George?
              • How Nice
                Including quotes like this is a great way to start showing our hoosier hospitality. “As long as they can put up with a bunch of obnoxious New Yorkers and New Englanders, it will be good.”
              • Super Bowl No Touchdown
                According to my brother, an online ticket broker, none of the 4 teams that remained as of this weekend have fans that "travel" particularly well and he anticipates tickets to the game being both available and affordable. It's not like we've got the Steelers and Packers coming to town. Given the headaches, the cost to the community for the stadium we didn't want and the street closings we don't need, the cost to us of acquiring the game in the first place, the usury and carpetbagging that's going on ($150/day to park and $10 for a bottle of Sun King) and the fact that an estimated 70% of the money coming into the market will be going right back out again, I have to really question this Super Bowl and I for one am glad I've got a client sales meeting in Orlando that week. The city gives something like $170,000 a year to support the arts in Indy yet they pay millions for one football game that is really going to have negligible impact on the city or its citizens. I say don't let the door hit it in the butt on its' way out of town on Feb. 6.

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                1. why oh why does this state continue to elect these people....do you wonder how much was graft out of the 3.8 billion?

                2. i too think this is a great idea. I think the vision and need is there as well. But also agree with Wendy that there may be better location in our city to fulfill this vision and help grow the sports of hockey and figure skating in Indy. Also to help further develop other parts of the city that seem often forgotten. Any of the other 6 townships out side of the three northernmost could benefit greatly from a facility and a vision like this. For a vision that sounds philanthropic, the location is appears more about the money. Would really like to see it elsewhere, but still wish the development the best of luck, as we can always use more ice in the city. As for the Ice growth when they return, if schedules can be coordinated with the Fuel, what could be better than to have high level hockey available to go see every weekend of the season? Good luck with the development and the return of the Ice.

                3. How many parking spaces do they have at Ironworks? Will residents have reserved spaces or will they have to troll for a space among the people that are there at Ruth Chris & Sangiovese?

                4. You do not get speeding ticket first time you speed and this is not first time Mr.Page has speed. One act should not define a man and this one act won't. He got off with a slap on the wrist. I agree with judge no person was injured by his actions. The state was robbed of money by paying too much rent for a building and that money could have been used for social services. The Page family maybe "generous" with their money but for most part all of it is dirty money that he obtained for sources that are not on the upright. Page is the kind of lawyer that gives lawyers a bad name. He paid off this judge like he has many other tine and walked away. Does he still have his license. I believe so. Hire him to get you confiscated drug money back. He will. It will cost you.

                5. I remain amazed at the level of expertise of the average Internet Television Executive. Obviously they have all the answers and know the business inside and out.