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Report: 125-room hotel, apartments to be built outside Turn 2 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway

IMS first program 1909

Plans are reportedly in the works to build a 125-room hotel and apartment complex adjacent to Turn 2 of Indianapolis Motor Speedway, according to a report by the Indianapolis Business Journal.

The report said that local developer Browning Investments Inc., solicited requests for proposals (RFP) for the project that were due March 20.

“We’re in exploratory mode,” IMS president Doug Boles told the IBJ. “We’ll sort that out in the next coming weeks or months.”

However, it would appear the proposed project might be on a fast track.

“The IMS would like construction to commence as soon as feasible,” the request for proposal said, according to the publication.

Further, the web site reported:

“Judging from the RFP, it seems IMS is operating on a pretty aggressive timetable. … IMS wants to have new or renovated Turn 2 VIP suites completed in time for the 100th running of the Indianapolis 500 next year, with completion of the hotel to follow by May 2017, according to the RFP.”

The area for the planned complex rests in the same general area as both existing VIP suites in Turn 2, as well as the former Indianapolis Motor Speedway Motel (later known as the Brickyard Crossing Inn), which existed from 1963 until it was torn down in 2009.

The demand for a new motel is certainly there, Visit Indy vice president Chris Gahl told IBJ.

“We feel that if they ultimately decide to put a hotel back on their property, there would be demand because the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is a magnet for tourists year round,” Gahl told the IBJ.

There is no estimate at what the cost for the overall project would be because there are still several variations before a final plan is formalized.

In addition to 125 hotel rooms, undetermined number of apartments and perhaps additional luxury VIP suites, the complex could also potentially include a restaurant, meeting space and other facilities and amenities.

The Indiana General Assembly in 2013 approved state loans that would allow IMS to make $100 million in capital improvements and upgrades that are due to be completed by May 2016.

Follow @JerryBonkowski