Papal campground flops, Mayor Nutter suggests hotels
There was so little interest in the idea of paying $200 to sleep outside during the Pope's visit that city officials had to scrap plans for the pop-up campground in East Fairmount Park just three days after it was announced.
ESM Productions, the event production company responsible for the "Francis Fields Campground," did not return our calls in time for comment. CBS Philly reported word from the City Office of Emergency Management that the idea was aborted due to "lack of interest."
Meanwhile, Mayor Michael Nutter's office announced on Friday morning that the mayor will be in Center City throughout the afternoon encouraging visitors to stay in hotels for the papal visit. He will begin at the Radisson Blu Warwick Hotel around 2 p.m., offering "tips for making the experience of visiting Philadelphia for the Papal events convenient and comfortable, and describe how hotels are making stays special for their guests."
Nutter will then visit additional hotels in the area.
There has been some concern in recent weeks that hotel rooms aren't selling at the rate predicted with city planners. Minimum night stays have been dropped, and prices have been lowered in hopes to max out occupancy in the next weeks before the Pope arrives.