For the past six years, Ben Franklin Parkway has been the home of Jay-Z’s Made In America Festival on Labor Day Weekend.
But now, it’s been revealed that beginning next year, the festival will not take place on the Parkway. A spokesperson told the Billy Penn that although the festival was initially a huge source of tourism, “the need for an event of this scale at this location may no longer be necessary.” In its inaugural year, 2013, the festival garnered around $32 million in local economic impact. Now, Made In America will likely have to find a new host venue.
The show’s founder and curator Jay-Z just spoke out about the mayor’s sudden decision. Hov penned a reaction for Philly.com revealing his feelings about the upheaval. He’s not too happy, especially because he found out through the media.
“We are disappointed that the mayor of the city of Philadelphia would evict us from the heart of the city, through a media outlet, without a sit-down meeting, notice, dialogue, or proper communication. It signifies zero appreciation for what Made In America has built alongside the phenomenal citizens of this city,” he wrote.
While Mayor Jim Kenney does admit that tourism during Labor Day weekend has risen over the past few years, Hov knows exactly what the source of that tourism is—his festival.
Jay goes on to speak on the good Made In America has brought to the city, which includes donating $2.9 million to the United Way of Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey and the “philanthropic footprint” MIA has brought to the city.
Hov ends his piece by saying that the rest of the dealings regarding the festival will be handled behind closed doors.