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Report: Arts in Philadelphia Contributes Billions to Local Economy

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(Among the events of the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival was the acrobatic dance of "Sequence 8," at the Merriam Theatre.  Photo provided)

(Among the events of the Philadelphia Live Arts Festival was the acrobatic dance of “Sequence 8,” at the Merriam Theatre. Photo provided)

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By Pat Loeb

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia’s arts scene is contributing more than just leisure time activities to the region. It’s also bringing more than $3 billion to the local economy, according to a report released today.

Our calendar shows we’re in the midst of Fashion Week, which followed on the heels of the Live Arts and Philly Fringe festivals and precedes the Philadelphia design festival and the film festival.

If you think all this is about having something to do, Tom Kaiden of the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance will set you straight:

“Our real value, actually, is in terms of the number of jobs we generate in this region.”

That’s 44,000 jobs, according to Kaiden.

“We produce about twice the national average in terms of jobs created by the sector here as compared to other parts of the country,” he tells KYW Newsradio.

Download the full report

Kaiden says the arts and culture sector also generates $169 million in tax revenue and bolsters other sectors, such as tourism.

“Seventy percent of our visitors said that if it had not been for that cultural event, they would not have come to Philadelphia,” Kaiden says.  And he says the arts are turning the city into a “world class” cultural destination.

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