Car sales boost W. Glenwood sales tax take
Year-over-year Glenwood Springs sales tax collections
2014 - $15.5M, +7.4 percent
2013 - $14.4M, +2.3 percent
2012 - $14M, +5.5 percent
2011 - $13.3M, +1.9 percent
2010 - $13M, -3.7 percent
The West Glenwood area pulled a larger share of the city’s sales taxes last year, fueled in part by a general increase in vehicle sales and several changes and additions along Glenwood’s auto row over the past two years.
According to a map of sales tax collection by area distributed annually by the city’s Finance Department, West Glenwood from Devereux Road to the west city limits (not including the Glenwood Springs Mall or the Meadows shopping center), generated 8.3 percent of the $15.5 million in sales taxes collected during 2014.
That percentage was up from 6.9 percent of total sales taxes in 2013 for that same area of town, prior to the opening of the new High Country Honda dealership in early 2014 .
Sales were also higher in that area in 2013 compared with 2012, as the new Mountain Chevrolet dealership came on line and Bighorn Toyota made its move to the former Chevy lot at Highway 6 & 24 and Storm King Road.
“As we looked at the increase for that area, automotive sales were the only real difference year over year,” said Mike Harman, finance director for the city.
Also supporting that conclusion was the fact that the automotive sales and servicing category was up 16 percent overall last year, and an increase in the percentage of sales taxes south of 23rd Street last year after the Berthod Motors dealership expanded.
Sales from that part of Glenwood Springs grew to 7.5 percent of the total for 2014, up from 6.7 percent the prior year, according to the breakdown of sales tax collections.
Overall, the tax collection map confirms that Glenwood Meadows, with its major national retailers, continues to be the main driver for sales activity in the city, pulling a whopping 24 percent of the total. That percentage has remained consistent over the four years included in the report.
Following in order in terms of percentage of sales: 11th-23rd streets, 14.5 percent; Roaring Fork Marketplace, 12.3 percent; Seventh-11th streets (downtown), 9.4 percent; North Glenwood (Sixth Street), 9 percent; West Glenwood, 8.3 percent; 23rd Street to city limits, 7.5 percent; and the Glenwood Springs Mall, 5.5 percent.
Most of those percentages have remained fairly consistent in recent years, the report shows. Several smaller categories, including sales taking place outside city limits and out of state but subject to city sales tax, made up a collective 2.4 percent of the total sales taxes for the year.
Total retail sales during 2014 in Glenwood Springs were up 7.4 percent over 2013 sales.
The sales-tax-by-area map helps the Glenwood Springs Chamber Resort Association in assisting new businesses determine where in the city to locate and take advantage of the more high-traffic, high-volume areas, said Chamber CEO Marianne Virgili.
“We get calls probably three times a week from people wanting to open a business here,” she said. “This is something we can put on our website that’s easy for people to navigate and help them in making that decision.
“I had two calls just today from retailers wanting to be downtown, which is great because we have vacancy there,” Virgili said.
While the majority of sales continue to be concentrated among the larger retailers at the Meadows, Roaring Fork Marketplace and the Glenwood Mall, Virgili said she continues to be impressed with how the downtown area is performing.
The combined 33 percent of total sales coming from the core part of town between Sixth and 23rd streets is “pretty significant,” she said.
“It’s also positive to see that sales tax growth is continuing into 2015,” Virgili said of a 12.3 percent increase in retail sales for this January over the same month last year.
In addition, the city recently distributed a map showing percentage of accommodations (lodging) taxes collected by area for 2014. The vast majority of lodging activity is concentrated in the central part of town (Sixth-13th streets), 60.4 percent; followed by West Glenwood, 33.5 percent, and South Glenwood, 6.1 percent.
Glenwood’s lodging tax collections were up 15.1 percent last year over 2013.
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Several Carbondale businesses are scrambling to relocate and others are just plain calling it quits following plans for one of the town’s oldest strip malls to be redeveloped.