Photo Credit: (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

Development projects worth hundreds of millions or even billions of dollars shouldn’t be influenced by a football game or golf tournament – but the reality is, they are, at least indirectly.


Sports showcase a city or region and change the way people feel and think about it. From sweeping aerial views of a revitalized skyline, to boots on the street, it’s a powerful way to showcase our dynamic region to audiences around the world. Sports allows us to meet potential investors where they are and when they enthusiastically tune in.


From the Lions playoff run to the NFL Draft and the NCAA Tournament to the Rocket Mortgage Classic and Detroit Grand Prix – sporting events are showcasing Detroit and the surrounding region to global audiences in 2024 in a major way. These premier stages are going to give a huge boost to economic developers trying to bring jobs and investment here.


When the DRP travels domestically and internationally, we meet site selectors and corporate consultants looking for the best places for new R & D centers, manufacturing facilities, and office space. And the first and most critical step is simply getting Detroit on their initial list of options.


Once we’re on the list, we can get them to visit Detroit for a Familiarization Tour to see all we offer in terms of talent, business climate, and quality of life and take that back to their clients who will decide where to locate.


Major sporting events are the ultimate ‘Fam Tour’. The past two NFL Drafts attracted between 300,000 and 600,000 people and around 50 million plus viewers and will deliver similarly large audiences to Detroit in April. There’s no substitute for that many people visiting your region or seeing it on TV in a positive light.


It shifts perceptions and helps make our work easier. No matter who wins or loses on the field or course, or racetrack, you can be sure that there will be future project wins in the Detroit Region because sports in 2024 helped showcase all Detroit and the Region has to offer.