AUSTIN (CBSDFW.COM/AP) — SXSW organizers say a new report they commissioned showed this year’s festival having a $315 million impact on the Austin economy.
Officials say 134,000 people attended at least one SXSW event in March. The report compiled by consulting firm Greyhill Advisors shows the impact this year was 44 percent more than it was in 2013, when the impact was estimated at $218 million.
Organizers say they were able to keep better track of how people were spending their money through 150,000 guest passes issued at free shows. They say an additional 239,700 people were attracted by the free events.
This year’s SXSW featured 13 days of industry conferences, a 4-day trade show, 6-night music festival and 9-day film festival. About 2,100 bands performed and 400 movies were screened.
The 2014 festival was also at the center of a deadly crash. Rashad Owens stands accused of plowing through a crowd of revelers at the South by Southwest music festival in March. A Travis County grand jury indicted Owens on one capital murder count and four counts of murder back in May.
Deandre Tatum, a North Texas teenager injured in the crash and comatose since March 13, died on March 27. Tatum, the fourth victim in the SXSW crash, was a 2013 Trimble Tech High School graduate.
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