Following a challenging year with an unprecedented and hasty relocation, Ultra Music Festival has announced that it will not return to the Virginia Key location and will be seeking a new, permanent home in South Florida.
In an official statement released today, Ultra acknowledged the largely negative feedback to the Virginia Key location, which was stretched across a venue that at some points, took attendees 45 minutes or more to walk across. Additionally, due to its isolated location, ride shares were banned and provided bus transportation leaving the island and festival had extended delays that caused hundreds of attendees to walk across a three mile bridge.
"After listening to feedback from many of you, it is clear that the festival experience in Virginia Key was simply not good enough," the statement reads. "This is Ultra Music Festival, after all, and our attendees expect us to deliver on our commitment to excellence. Being committed to excellence not only means constantly striving to become better, it also means being willing to change things when they are not working."
Ultra has voluntarily terminated their license with the City of Miami, where the festival has been based for two decades. The statement was released strategically, the day before the Virginia Key commission was meant to vote on potentially revoking a year-to-year licensing agreement with the festival. The statement continues to allude to a new "unique and impressive" location in South Florida that will become the new, permanent home of Ultra for "many years to come". According to Miami Herald sources, it is rumored that the Homestead-Miami Speedway, a race track located about 35 miles South of Miami, could be the new home for the festival.
The statement concludes with a promise to reveal details about the location and dates soon.
Though Ultra plans to relocate within South Florida, it remains to be seen how the annual Miami Music Week and Winter Music Conference, both of which have traditionally been planned throughout the week just prior to the festival, will be affected.
See the full statement below.
Valerie Lee is Mixmag's Global Culture Editor. Find her on Twitter here.
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