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Speedway sets agenda for $140M in improvements

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The Indianapolis Motor Speedway says it is ready to start several improvement projects using $100 million in state assistance.

Track officials say approval on Tuesday by Indiana Motorsports Commission will allow it to move ahead on arranging financing for the projects, which are projected to cost about $140 million.

Modifications include the repaving and reconfiguration of the track's road course that was done this fall. A new scoring pylon and new video screens are planned for next spring.

Other planned projects include grandstand, seating, restroom and concession improvements, and better wireless access. Officials say they've decided against spending an estimated $20 million to add lights for night races.

The project will add an apron in the four turns of the oval to be used for NASCAR events in an effort to increase competition.

State legislators in April approved the assistance plan directing growth in sales and income tax collections from the track and a new ticket fee toward paying off the $100 million loan over 20 years.

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  • What a shock
    What a shock. The taxpayers foot the bill to renovate a property owned by multi-millionaires who will not use their own money.
  • No Lights?!?
    I thought the underlying point of all these renovations was to add lights to introduce night races into the schedule, either for NASCAR or IndyCar. With all the other renovations they're contemplating, why not add the lights to at least get a potential new source of revenue?
  • Tax the poor
    In the great state of Indiana, AGAIN our tax dollars go to support the wealthy while the poor go without medical care.

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  1. How can any company that has the cash and other assets be allowed to simply foreclose and not pay the debt? Simon, pay the debt and sell the property yourself. Don't just stiff the bank with the loan and require them to find a buyer.

  2. If you only knew....

  3. The proposal is structured in such a way that a private company (who has competitors in the marketplace) has struck a deal to get "financing" through utility ratepayers via IPL. Competitors to BlueIndy are at disadvantage now. The story isn't "how green can we be" but how creative "financing" through captive ratepayers benefits a company whose proposal should sink or float in the competitive marketplace without customer funding. If it was a great idea there would be financing available. IBJ needs to be doing a story on the utility ratemaking piece of this (which is pretty complicated) but instead it suggests that folks are whining about paying for being green.

  4. The facts contained in your post make your position so much more credible than those based on sheer emotion. Thanks for enlightening us.

  5. Please consider a couple of economic realities: First, retail is more consolidated now than it was when malls like this were built. There used to be many department stores. Now, in essence, there is one--Macy's. Right off, you've eliminated the need for multiple anchor stores in malls. And in-line retailers have consolidated or folded or have stopped building new stores because so much of their business is now online. The Limited, for example, Next, malls are closing all over the country, even some of the former gems are now derelict.Times change. And finally, as the income level of any particular area declines, so do the retail offerings. Sad, but true.

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