Outdoor Recreation Economy

Over the past few years, SMPDC has been working with land trusts, trail groups, and selected cities and towns on developing strategies for outdoor recreation growth as a method to achieve numerous economic development goals such as diversifying our strong tourism base, connecting to downtowns and encouraging a younger demographic to visit and possibly relocate in the region.


The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted our region's abundant and diverse outdoor recreation opportunities, and even caused increased recreation across southern Maine. SMPDC hopes to continue investigating the benefits of outdoor recreation as a driver of our region's economic development, and help implement programs and initiatives that support the industry. 


Outdoor Recreation Industry Profile - Final Report (April 2022)

SMPDC, with the help of Camoin Associates, conducted a target industry analysis to identify steps Southern Maine can take to further grow the outdoor recreation industry in a way that aligns with the community’s values and addresses critical economic development issues. The resulting strategy detailed in this report recognizes the work being done by many organizations throughout the region and state to pursue similar goals and is intended to be implemented in a collaborative way.