Arts / cultural venues and events make big impact on downtown and all of San Jose

Editor’s Note: This is an edited and enhanced version of a press release issued Nov. 3 by the City and SV Creates.

San Jose’s nonprofit arts and culture industry generated $292 million in economic activity in 2022, according to the Arts & Economic Prosperity 6 study.

The economic and social impact study conducted by Americans for the Arts in partnership with the SVCREATES and the City’s Office of Economic Development and Cultural Affairs claimed county activity in arts and culture totaled $384.5 million.

More key metrics:

  • San Jose’s nonprofit arts and culture industry generates $192 million in event-related spending by its audiences;
  • The typical attendee spends $43.88 per person per event in San Jose, not including the cost of admission;
  • 23.7% of arts and culture attendees were from outside Santa Clara County. They spent an average of $65.69, vital income for local businesses;
  • 86.4% of San Jose respondents agreed that the activity or venue they were attending was “a source of neighborhood pride for the community.”
  • 85.2% said they would “feel a sense of loss if that activity or venue was no longer available.”

“San Jose is seeing significant resurgence of the arts and other cultural activities—downtown foot traffic is trending up, and our theaters and outdoor programs are steadily rebounding to pre-pandemic attendance levels,” said San Jose Mayor Matt Mahan.

Nationally, the study reveals that America’s nonprofit arts and culture sector is a $151.7 billion industry—one that supports 2.6 million jobs and generates $29.1 billion in government revenue.

The majority of San Jose arts groups and cultural events are based in or near downtown.  San Jose Downtown Association supports the sector with its twice-weekly dissemination of weekly events to more than 7,000 subscribers, expanding social media reach, popular “What’s Going On?” webpage; and by partnering on major events such as Downtown Ice, Music in the Park, Dia San Jose, SoFA Street Fair, Pobladores Night Market, City Dance and Starlight Cinemas.

SJ one-page summary
SJ full report
Mercury News coverage (Sal Pizarro): Arts are good for us and San Jose’s economy

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