Economic surge felt across Cleveland following unprecedented year

Updated: Nov. 4, 2016 at 7:58 PM EDT
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DOWNTOWN CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - Million is a word Cleveland is hearing a lot in 2016. In June, an estimated 1.3 million people packed the streets during the Cavaliers championship parade. A month later, the Republican National Convention earned the city an estimated $200 to $250 million.

Cleveland's sports teams also brought in big bucks this year.

"People are starting to look at us like a destination for leisure, for meetings, and for conventions for sports games," said Destination Cleveland Senior Communications Manager Jennifer Kramer.

Kramer said each Cavs and Indians postseason home game brought in about $3 million.

Each Cleveland Cavaliers NBA Championship Game raised about $5 million. Numbers are still being crunched for the Indians World Series games, but Destination Cleveland believes the profits are similar.

"Every time you think, 'We're going to catch our breath,' now we've got something else going on. It's been great," said Butcher and Brewer General Manager Nikki Johnson.

Restaurants and bars feel the economic surge in Cleveland, especially spots on E. 4th St. Johnson said business during the World Series was through the roof.

"On a typical Tuesday night, that's probably a good 80 percent more business than we would normally see down here. Every little bit helps, but something like that, you can't even plan for," Johnson said.

After such an amazing year, planning is exactly what the city is doing for the future. Kramer said Cleveland doesn't plan to slow down.

"This really amplifies the story of Cleveland to Clevelanders and people around the world. They have a new perception of Cleveland, they're starting to understand what's going on here and kind of shedding the old mind set," Kramer said.

Kramer said Cleveland already has meetings and conventions planned for 2017, including a January American Bus Association conference, which will bring thousands of people to the city.

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