The National Park Service says visitors to its Massachusetts parks in 2012 pumped over $500 million into the state’s economy. But the only historic site in western Mass. contributed well under one percent of that.
The new park service report says of the one million people who visited a national park in Massachusetts, only 17,000 of them stopped by the Springfield Armory. But superintendent James Woolsey says the Armory means more to the community than just economic benefits.
“The Springfield Armory is one of those places that contributed to our growth as a nation,” says Woolsey. “And so I think local people should really understand that impact it has both locally and nationally, and I think that brings pride as well as economic benefits.”
Still, Woolsey says he wants to bring in more people and more money. He says visitation has remained static for a couple of decades. But his staff is working on initiatives including road signs and educational programs that he hopes will bring more visitors to the historic site.