Philly landmark reopens its doors with multimillion-dollar upgrade

Antionette Lee
December 03, 2018 - 3:31 pm
It used to be called the Philadelphia Metropolitan Opera House. Several decades and $56 million later, Philadelphia now has its own Met concert venue.

Antionette Lee/KYW Newsradio

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PHILADELPHIA (KYW Newsradio) — It used to be called the Philadelphia Metropolitan Opera House. Several decades and $56 million later, Philadelphia now has its own Met concert venue. 

Bob Dylan will be the first artist to grace the upgraded stage tonight. His performance will be followed by several other big names like John Legend, Weezer, and Philly's own Meek Mill. 

"The Met is the secret weapon for North Broad Street. It's going to energize this corridor. We have seven restaurants under construction and one year from now, you will not recognize the changes in North Broad Street," said Eric Blumenfeld, who co-developed the project that seats 3,500 people. 

RELATED: The Met Philadelphia set to reopen with milestone concert in December

So how do the North Philly neighbors feel? 

Marion Thompson grew up in the neighborhood and she says she's excited. 

"Now look what has happened for Philadelphia and I say the world! I'm 75-years-old and I am seeing another part of history and that's important to us," Thompson said. 

She attends the Holy Ghost Headquarters, and their services will be held inside the historic venue every Sunday, thanks to Reverend Mark Hatcher. 

He stopped the building from being demolished by buying it and investing millions over the decades into its restoration. 

"So they can come out of their houses now, come right in their community, and be part of a multipurpose building now. Jobs are being created for them so it's great," he said.