If you live near Miami and you’re a fan of the Ultra Music Festival, you’re in for a treat. After the conclusion of a recent agreement, Ultra Music Festival was given clearance to stay in Miami and keep on rocking until 2027. While music lovers are thrilled, not everyone in Miami is happy about the decision. Here’s what you should know about the recent agreement and how it’s affecting Miami residents.
What Is the Ultra Music Festival
For those of you who are unfamiliar with it, you should know that the Ultra Music Festival is one of the most exciting and highly anticipated annual music festivals in the nation. The wildly popular electronic music festival has been attracting crowds since 1999.
Ultra Music Festival has a strong association with Miami. Over the years, the festival continued to become more popular. In fact, it became so popular, that an international offshoot called Ultra Worldwide took off in 2008.
Ultra Music Festival to Remain in Miami Until 2027
Miami has agreed to let Ultra Music Festival utilize the grounds at Bayfront Park until 2027. The deal was negotiated between festival organizers and the Bayfront Park Management Trust. The deal was finalized after the City of Miami Commission voted to approve the deal which would give Ultra Music Festival permission to stay in Miami for several years.
Members of the City of Miami Commission showed overwhelming support for the deal as the vote passed without any objections. The decision to allow the Ultra Music Festival to operate in Miami for such a long time was an important one not to be taken lightly.
The Ultra Music Festival draws large numbers of people, injecting plenty of money into businesses based in the Miami area. Many of the people that travel to South Florida for the festival will be spending money at Miami restaurants while paying to stay in Miami hotels.
How Miami Residents Are Reacting
Everyone knows that South Florida loves a party, but some folks are resistant to the idea of having such large and loud crowds of people occupying the park they live next to every year until 2027.
According to the details of the recently negotiated deal that cemented the Ultra Music Festival’s place in Miami for years to come, Bayfront Park is to remain open to the public for at least 85% of the year.
One caveat to the terms of that deal has Miami residents like James Torres asking to fine-tune the terms of the agreement. The Downtown Neighbors Alliance has pointed out that the number of days that the music festival takes to occupy the park every year doesn’t count towards the percentage of time the park is to remain open to the public.
The Ultra Music Festival has been given the authority to close Bayfront Park for 28 days. Local residents are concerned about how long the park will be closed to the public each year as the Ultra Music Festival can occupy the park for so many days.
Although the Downtown Neighbors Alliance has given its support for the recent agreement allowing Ultra Music Festival to make use of Bayfront Park, it doesn’t want the festival to get out of hand.
As recently as 2020, the Downtown Neighbors Alliance sued the city of Miami for hosting the Ultra Music Festival in Bayfront Park. The festival was reportedly hosted without a formal contract. Residents complained that the music was so unbearably loud, that it impeded their ability to enjoy spending time in their own homes.
Despite the lawsuit, the show was expected to proceed as scheduled until the spread of COVID-19 caused the festival to be canceled. The festival was canceled by the organizers after they received a request to cancel the event from Miami city officials.
Given the Downtown Neighbors Alliance’s previous hostility towards the Ultra Music Festival, it’s unclear how smoothly the newly negotiated arrangement will go over the next few years until 2027.
Why the Ultra Music Festival Is Suits Miami
Although the tension between proponents of the Ultra Music Festival and local residents is palpable, the festival as a whole seems to suit Bayfront Park. When the festival was forced to relocate to Virginia Key in 2019 the transportation logistics were a complete disaster.
When the festival was moved to Virginia Key in 2019, it was much more difficult for people to get to and from the festival as it was based on an island with only one way to get off. Due to numerous buses being delayed and overwhelmed with passengers, an enormous number of people had to walk for hours to get back off of the island after the festival was over.
Thousands of people had no choice but to take the long walk across the Rickenbacker Causeway on their way off the island as other forms of transportation had failed due to the spatial and logistical constraints of the venue.
Bayfront Park is a much more suitable location for such a large and logistically complex event by comparison. There’s plenty of space and it’s easy for revelers to reach via Lyft, Uber, and other means of transportation. As busy and packed as Ultra Music Festival is, it’s much more orderly and less congested at Bayfront Park than it was on Virginia Key.
Despite concerns that local residents have raised over the safety of the event, Ultra Music Festival has grown increasingly safe over the years. In 2018, the Ultra Music Festival was hailed as the safest UMF ever. If UMF can be expected to get safer over time by taking precautions, it could win over more Miami residents.
South Florida EDM Fans Celebrate as Miami Agrees to Host UMF Through 2027
Now that Miami has become the new official home of the Ultra Music Festival, the city is poised to be showered in money from all of the revelers traveling to Miami and spending money during the festival.
For people who enjoy electronic dance music, or, EDM, the decision to host UMF in Miami through 2027 is something to celebrate. The waves of money that flow into Miami as a result of the agreement to host UMF in the city will benefit local businesses for years.