Looking Ahead After Disappointing Season For Philly Tourism

 

G. Widman, for the Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation

G. Widman, for the Greater Philadelphia Tourism Marketing Corporation

  • With so many expectations dashed in the past decade’s expansion of museums in and around Independence Mall, Axis Philly wonders what lessons heritage tourism might learn moving forward. One takeaway surely is to better harmonize the various institutions’ efforts in showcasing Philly as the “birthplace of America.” But that’s a charge easier said than done. The Museum of the American Revolution’s CEO Michael Quinn argues that advent of his museum will only embolden the heritage economy, in much the same way that the Barnes Foundation helped the city’s art tourism reach critical mass. Others aren’t so sure, worrying that the new museum will only stretch the small yet dedicated philanthropy community’s dollars even thinner than they are now due to cuts from the state and federal governments.
  • The Philly Post’s Joel Mathis responds to the inevitable backlash over US Senator Bob Casey’s suggestion that Harrisburg raise the gasoline tax in order to avoid the implementation of SEPTA’s doomsday budget, even providing a mantra for these anti-urbanists to consider: “SEPTA is not welfare. It’s economic development.” In fact, the stats Mathis cites suggest that the welfare argument should be flipped, as southeastern Pennsylvania, while comprising 32% of the state’s population and 40% of its economy, only receives 27% of its transportation dollars.
About the author

Stephen Currall recently received his BA in history from Arcadia University. Before beginning doctoral studies, he is pursuing his interest in local history, specifically just how Philadelphians engage their vibrant past. Besides skimming through 18th century letters, Steve is also interested in music and travel.

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3 Comments


  1. I live up in the Allentown PA area, I used to drive down to Philly about 4-5 times a year with family to do the usual “tourist” type museum stuff, we spent alot of time in museums, restaurants and stayed untill 9 or 10 at night.

    This past year I have only been to the city 2 times, mostly because driving/parking has become friggin expensive, There is no direct easy or affordable public transit from Allentown to Philly.

    The rising crime is also a big factor, getting hassled by crazy street people takes alot of the fun out of a family day trip.

    I can deal with I-76 traffic, but not feeling safe after dark is a major factor in finding someplace besides Philly to visit on a day off.

    I spent a lot of time around Philly at night in the past but recently its been down right scary in the parking garages after dark.

    • Jason, I’m confused. Just about all stats show that crime has been dropping in the city, year over year, and for some time: http://articles.philly.com/2013-07-01/news/40288167_1_crime-city-homicide-figures-analysis. Asserting that crime is rising is irresponsible and divorced from reality.

      I’m sorry if for some reason you don’t feel safe after dark, but I’ve lived in the city for the past seven years after moving back to the area and I’ll tell you that it is a HECK of a lot safer today than it was 10-15 years ago. I have not felt unsafe after dark once in my most recent stint here (yes, 7 years), and I spend time in South Philly, West Philly, Fishtown, Center City, Fairmount, and other neighborhoods close to Center City. Sure, there are still bad neighborhoods in other parts of town, but they’re not the places where tourists go.

      So tell me, what gives? I’m happy to have a conversation based in facts.

  2. As Jason says – parking is a major problem. It has become a nightmare whether you live or work in the city of just want to visit. It is a major reason for people staying away.

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