Petco Park study shows employment numbers in San Diego are essentially unchanged

Donald Miralle

An analysis of Petco Park's impact on downtown San Diego after 10 years was released yesterday by the National University System Institute for Policy Research (NUSIPR).  It showed that the number of employees working in the area remained essentially unchanged, but the area was revitalized by new construction and more than 15,000 new residents in the area.

PETCO_Park_10_Year_Analysis.pdf

Employment remains essentially unchanged, with 64,689 workers employed at 92101 businesses in 2004 and 64,718 working in downtown in 2011.

A difference of 29 jobs, but employment for those working in bars, restaurants and hotels did grow.

San Diego Source > Petco Park's first decade marked by flat economic growth ($)

"While there are developments moving forward that offer the chance to add to downtown’s employment base, the region still has been unable to accelerate job growth downtown or to diversify the economy…," said Erik Bruvold, who drafted the report based on data collected from the Census Bureau and other sources. "The ballpark’s promise has yet to be fulfilled."

But the new job growth in hospitality and tourism was balanced by the loss of white collar jobs that left downtown for more suburban areas.

One reason for the flat job growth is that the creation of restaurant and hotel jobs around the stadium has been offset by an exodus of lawyers, accountants, consultants and other professionals for the suburbs, such as University Towne Centre.

The recession too can be blamed for the sluggish economy in the East Village and it could be argued that it'd be worse without the ballpark.

Study: Results Mixed on Petco Park Impact | NBC 7 San Diego

Kris Michell, CEO of the Downtown San Diego Partnership, said that’s not necessarily a bad thing. "We have been through the worst recession since the great depression so the fact that we've stayed even is good," she said.

The study also shows that there was a bump in attendance but it didn't last long.

Study: Petco Park scores big for San Diego’s East Village | FOX5 San Diego

When it comes to the Padres, the study found Petco’s opening did not radically transform San Diego’s relationship to baseball. The Padres inaugural season saw an initial spike of interest with 3 million in attendance for the 2004 season. Since then, there has been a decline in average attendance levels of about 2 million.

*They surely meant a decline of 1 million.

Attendance levels have now returned to post '94 strike levels at Qualcomm Stadium.  Here's the attendance data for Petco Park that I calculated from Baseball-Reference over the past 20 years.  You already know that the first year of the Padres playing in Petco Park was in 2004.

Year

Attendance

Games

Wins

Losses

Win %

1994

953,886

117

47

70

0.402

1995

1,052,995

144

70

74

0.486

1996

2,207,918

162

91

71

0.562

1997

2,089,333

162

76

86

0.469

1998

2,555,964

162

98

64

0.605

1999

2,523,538

162

74

88

0.457

2000

2,423,142

162

76

86

0.469

2001

2,378,148

162

79

83

0.488

2002

2,221,230

162

66

96

0.407

2003

2,030,084

162

64

98

0.395

2004

3,016,752

162

87

75

0.537

2005

2,869,787

162

82

80

0.506

2006

2,659,732

162

88

74

0.543

2007

2,790,074

163

89

74

0.546

2008

2,427,535

162

63

99

0.389

2009

1,922,603

162

75

87

0.463

2010

2,131,774

162

90

72

0.556

2011

2,143,018

162

71

91

0.438

2012

2,123,721

162

76

86

0.469

2013

2,166,691

162

76

86

0.469

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