NYC reaches goal of 50 million tourists

2011-12-21 22:25

New York - Mayor Michael Bloomberg has proclaimed victory in his longstanding effort to attract more visitors - and their money - to New York City, announcing that the city will surpass its goal of 50 million tourists in a year within the next few days.

"That means more guests in our hotels, more shoppers in our stores, larger audiences in our museums and theaters, more economic growth and - what's really important to the city - more tax revenues and more jobs," Bloomberg said on Tuesday at a Times Square press conference, standing alongside some festively dressed Rockettes dancers and looking out at a small throng of tourists snapping pictures of the event.

The mayor said the city was expecting 50.2 million visitors by the end of the year, reaching a target that he first set in 2006, when the most recent yearly tourist total was under 43 million.

At the time, he said the city would aim to reach the mark by 2015. That deadline was moved up to 2012 a few years later, and on Tuesday he said the city had beat its own schedule by a year.

In all, the visitors are expected to spend $32bn in the city this year.

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