Charlotte Chamber President predicts large economic impact from PGA Championship

Charlotte Chamber President predicts large economic impact from PGA Championship

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Big crowds are expected at Charlotte-Douglas International Airport this week for the PGA Championship at Quail Hollow Club.

As fans of the sport arrive, decision makers at the airport seem to be facing new challenges over parking. The issue doesn't involve cars, but rather private planes and corporate jets in town for the golfing event.

Aviation director Brent Cagle is grateful for a new windfall.

"We've been preparing now and we have alternative plans for what I would call overflow parking for aircraft," he said.

While large numbers of visitors during the opening days of the tournament have been strong, golf fans still on their way to town may be caught in the grips of supply and demand.

Some car rental websites like Avis are telling customers that getting a vehicle may be tough. Bob Morgan, who heads up the Charlotte Chamber, says the event at Quail Hollow offers maximum exposure for the city. He calls it a classic case of sports driving new economic opportunities with many eyes on Charlotte.

"You're talking about a $100 million economic impact," Morgan said. "You're talking about 200 countries that will have the opportunity to watch this on television."

Morgan also said more than 500 million people around the world will have an opportunity to watch the tournament on television.

The ripple effect will be felt at restaurants in places like SouthPark. Reservations continue to pour in through Sunday. Diners at the eateries are getting ready to see fancy cars, well-known celebrities, and full tables.

Virginia Bailey has been handling the calls at Georges Brasserie.

"We see the cars. We see the people who are coming from out of town, and it's exciting and it's fun. And everybody enjoys that type of thing, I think," Bailey said.

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