Colorado Business Committee for the Arts 2012 Study reveals
Metro Denver arts & culture generated $1.76 billion in Economic Activity


Denver metro area arts, cultural and scientific organizations rebounded from the economic crisis in 2011, generating $1.76 billion in Total Economic Activity and $527 million in Economic Impact, according to the 2012 Economic Activity Study of Metro Denver conducted by the Colorado Business Committee for the Arts (CBCA).

Download the 2012 Study Brochure HERE.

To schedule a Study presentation for your organization, contact Administrative & Events Coordinator, Meredith Badler, at mbadler@cbca.org or 303-282-5135.

Highlights of the study, unveiled at a sold-out event on Oct. 31, 2012 at the Four Seasons Hotel Denver, include:

  • Total Economic Activity: This combination of operating expenses, audience spending and capital expenditure totaled $1.76 billion in 2011, an 18.4% increase over 2009.
  • Economic Impact: “New Money” – dollars that ordinarily would not be spent in the metro area – reached $527 million in 2011, an enormous 36% increase and by far the largest impact ever recorded in a CBCA study.
  • Attendance: A mix of big events (King Tut, Denver Art Museum) and new facilities (Lone Tree Arts Center) helped draw 14.6 million in 2011, a 30% jump.
  • Capital Spending: It was a banner year with the opening of the Clyfford Still Museum, Lone Tree Arts Center, and Parker Arts, Culture and Events Center. In all, the year saw $49 million in Capital Spending, a 25% hike.
  • Jobs: Strong growth continued at arts, cultural and scientific groups during 2011, as total employment increased by 7% with 9,354 total jobs.
  • Volunteers: Community spirit was on full display in 2011, as 50,460 volunteered at arts and cultural institutions, a 19% increase.
  • Scientific and Cultural Facilities District: The voter-approved sales and use tax delivered $41.9 million to more than 300 groups in the 7-county area in 2011, the second highest total ever.

The study results, drawn from the 2011 fiscal year, reflect data reported by more than 300 organizations in the seven-county area that receive distributions from the Scientific and Cultural Facilities District. That includes the likes of the Denver Museum of Nature and Science and Curious Theater, Su Teatro and the Butterfly Pavilion.

In addition to results from 2011, this year the CBCA study also looks at the past decade of growth, revealing figures that document the enormous economic and social impact of the arts from 2001-2011. Those highlights include:

  • Attendance: More than 142 million have passed through the turnstiles since 2001.
  • Jobs: Total employment at arts, cultural and scientific groups has grown 22%.
  • Capital Expenditures: More than $200 million has been invested in the future during a decade that saw the opening of more than a dozen significant new facilities.
  • Corporate Sponsorship: More than $100 million has been donated.
  • Outreach to Schools: The number of students who have experienced the arts has doubled in the past decade, with 4.3 million reached in 2011.
  • Volunteers: The 50,460 who volunteered in 2011 represent a 75% increase.
  • Scientific and Cultural Facilities District: The voter-approved sales and use tax distributed $424 million during the decade.


Thank you to our generous sponsors:


For additional information 
on the 2012 Economic Activity Study and to arrange interviews, contact Joe Rassenfoss, R&R Media, at 303-803-8008. 

Click on year to see previous study results: 2010, 2008, 2006