Medford and Jackson County economy on the rise

Events held throughout the community are helping the economy in Medford along with travel and tourism. (Marissa Olid/News 10).

The economy in Medford and Jackson County is on a rise and there may be a venue in the works for more possible growth throughout the community.

Events such as Comic-Con, the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, the Medford Rod and Custom Car Show and many more draw thousands of people into the Rogue Valley throughout the year.

Not only does the City of Medford and Jackson County receive a lot of travel and tourism through these popular events but also through sporting events. Teams and individuals stay in hotels when they visit and eat at restaurants all while experiencing southern Oregon.

Eli Matthews, Senior Vice President of Travel at The Chamber of Commerce, says all this ultimately helps the community.

"This last year was over $580 million in economic impact providing for just our county over 56,00 jobs that are interconnected with travel and tourism," said Matthews.

With many events held throughout the year, it brings questions as to why a convention center has not been built in the City of Medford yet. Currently, the Armory is used in Medford or the Jackson County Expo.

The Chamber of Commerce and Medford city staff have discussed creating an indoor mixed facility such as a smaller event center.

"Looking at doing possibly an event center where you can do everything from conferences, big meetings but also have volleyball, wrestling tournaments and anything indoor in a big space because we really don't have that now," said Matthews.

At the moment, nothing has been finalized but the city is hosting a session in September to look at creating an aquatics center and a phased mixed-use event center.

In the meantime, they will be looking at possible locations, costs and funding.

In celebration of the Chamber of Commerce celebrating 100 years, they have created a new festival for families to enjoy. The festival is titled "Heart of Rogue Festival," after their new slogan.

The festival will take place in October 2020.

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