Supporting Local Businesses

When you spend $50-100 on a tank of gas, it hurts. And it doesn’t just hurt you – it also hurts Minnesota’s economy. That’s because the majority of that $50-100 you just spent will immediately leave the state, if not the country, and won’t soon return to our state’s economy.

Spending $50 at a local restaurant is very different. When you buy a meal, most of your purchase actually pays for staff time – in other words it stays in the Minnesota economy and recirculates when the cook and the waiter take their earnings to the local bookstore, or Target, or restaurant.

In a local economy, everyone benefits when dollars circulate, bouncing from one local business to the next. Below is a basic calculation of economic benefit of Greenways. This is a very preliminary estimate, and we’re showing how we arrived at it so that you can see what assumptions we’re making.

However, when people switch to commuting by bike, they save roughly XX per year in transportation costs. Individuals will spend this savings in a number of ways, including eating out, fixing up their homes, and buying more goods at local stores. In each of these cases, they’ll be spending their savings in a way that will keep more of their dollars circulating in the local economy for longer.

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