Tourism Strategic Plan
Contact Info

The Tourism Implementation Task Force has been meeting regularly since May 2018. Updates are provided below. Task Force meetings are open to the public. For questions or meeting time, date & location, please contact Linda Matteson, Assistant to the County Manager and Staff Liaison to the Task Force, at (505) 662-8086 or send Linda an e-mail.

November 2018 Update:
The primary focus for the Task Force has been the possible relocation of the Los Alamos townsite Visitor Center in Central Park Square. This is an item that is outlined in the Tourism Strategic Plan. At the last meeting of the Task Force, a letter to Council was completed that recommended five locations for the short term relocation of the Los Alamos Visitor Center. The letter will be sent to Council in December as part of the staff report for the Visitor Center operation and management services agreement. (see Background below for more information on activities that occurred May - October toward completion of this action item.)

In the last month, the Tourism Implementation Task Force continued to meet and discuss implementation of the Tourism Strategic Plan as it relates to public transportation and opportunities to bring visitors from Bandelier up into Los Alamos for additional tours of the Manhattan Project National Historical Park and its Visitor Center, the nearby museums, historic district walking tour, Ashley Pond Park and other attractions, shops and amenities located in the Creative District or downtown Los Alamos. Atomic City Transit Manager, Annette Granillo, recently gave a presentation to the Task Force. Her presentation included an overview of the transit system routes, usage and funding. In addition, two field trips were completed at the White Rock Visitor Center in October so that the Task Force could view shuttle operations during  peak visitor times that occur because of the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta (the first two weekends in October).

Finally, the Task Force formed four work groups to focus on the various action items and recommendations from the Tourism Strategic Plan. The four work groups are: Infrastructure, Marketing, Attractions, and Events.

Next Steps:
The recommendations listed above in the update will go to Council along with the Visitor Center Operations and Management Contract for possible award at the Dec. 18, 2018 council meeting. When that staff report is published (no later than Friday, Dec. 14), the link to the agenda will be available here and will contain the letter and any other background on the process or relevant attachments.

The Task Force will be discussing at future meetings how to enhance the visitor experience at the White Rock Visitor Center and how to better utilize the space available.

The Task Force will be working with the Transportation Board to determine if there are any possible modifications that can be made to the current system to improve and/or enhance a visitor’s ability to get to these Los Alamos features and historic areas from the White Rock Visitor Center. 

The four newly formed work groups will meet separately and will report on progress made on the action items from the Tourism Strategic Plan during future Task Force meetings.

Related documents:
The Tourism Strategic Plan can be reviewed here

The Task Force charter can be found here.

Membership & Charter:
As part of Council’s action on February 27, 2018 to accept the Tourism Strategic Plan, the Tourism Implementation Task Force (or “Task Force”) was formed. The Task Force charter was approved in April 2018 and the members were selected and appointed in May 2018. This task force was modeled after the White Rock Master Plan Implementation committee to provide guidance and expertise to the Council and County staff on tourism implementation issues. The members are:

Micheline Devaurs
David Fox
Prashant Jain
Dave Jolly
Heather McClenahan
Lauren McDaniel
T. Clay Moseley
Cristina Olds
Lodgers’ Tax Advisory Representative: Katie Bruell
Historic Preservation Representative: Mark Rayburn
Parks and Recreation Representative: Stephanie Nakhleh

Note: Four members of the Task Force were also members of the Tourism Work Group that helped develop the Tourism Strategic Plan, in order to provide continuity from the strategic planning phase to the implementation phase. 

Background/Summary of Work Accomplished to Date:
Task Force members have primarily focused efforts these past six months on finding a new Los Alamos Visitor Center location. The current leased space in Central Park Square will end Dec. 31, 2018. The Tourism Strategic Plan recommended finding a better, more highly visible and accessible space for the Visitor Center in downtown Los Alamos. Toward that goal, the Task Force:

* Reviewed a list of possible Visitor Center locations - not only as stated in the Tourism Strategic Plan, but also by brainstorming other possible Los Alamos locations

* Defined selection criteria such as cost, location and space available

* Established a weighting of the above criteria to evaluate possible locations

* Created a rubric that defined how each criteria was to be analyzed and scored

* Organized a Visitor Center work group to evaluate all possible locations for short term relocation (Note: due to many uncertainties, especially with County budgets, the Task Force will only be recommending locations for the short term.)

For additional questions about the work of the Task Force, contact the Staff Liaison and Assistant to the County Manager Linda Mattison.