The World Heritage Site designation is expected to be a catalyst for socio-economic change and has the potential to impact South Central San Antonio. The greatest impact will come from increased visitation and tourism spending. Local, authentic small business development and the need to preserve legacy business is a critical component of the World Heritage Work Plan. In 2016, the City began to work with the University of Texas – San Antonio to inventory businesses and services around Mission San José and Mission San Juan. Following this assessment, the City began to survey visitors to San Antonio to identify cultural heritage tourism gaps and opportunities. Both the assessment and survey will provide the City with information to develop a policy, program, and tools to improve and enhance the resident and visitor experience.
Since 1998, the City’s Operation Facelift Program has funded façade improvement projects within the inner city aimed at reversing the deterioration of commercial structures while creating aesthetically pleasing environments. As part of the effort to assist existing business owners, the program identified a World Heritage Targeted Area for FY 2017. The World Heritage Targeted Area is primarily bounded by U.S. Interstate I-10 to the North and S.E. Military Drive to the south.