Touring the JW Marriott complex

May 12, 2009
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JW Marriott complexThe developers of the new JW Marriott hotel complex gave photographer Robin Jerstad and me a tour of the $425 million project earlier this month. They say construction is on schedule and coming in under budget. Check out JW Marriott
                              complexa photo gallery from the tour of the four-hotel complex here. A couple of new details we picked up about the 1,623-room facility: The 34-story flagship JW Marriott hotel will feature a farm-to-table Italian restaurant and an upscale sports bar called High Velocity. It also will feature a Hertz rental car outlet. Developer White Lodging, which is partnering with REI Investments on the project, is self-financing the JW Marriott portion of the project but secured bank financing for the other hotels.

Check it out: In the next few days, workers will be placing massive trusses for what will be the largest hotel ballroom in the Midwest, at 40,500 square feet.
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  • Nice work Cory. Like I mentioned months ago, this thing will be up and running and the old INB tower will still have exterior panelling to be hung.
  • Is it my imagination, or are they really using those butt-ugly blue glass panels for the exterior? In person, it looks nothing like the original rendering of highly reflective colored panels. I thought it would look more like the glass panels used in Allen Plaza (Scotty's building).
  • One of the early renderings showed multi-colored glass panels. See here. But they later changed to all blue glass. You can see a more recent rendering here. You can also see how the blue will look in a video here.
  • I personally find the all-blue look much more attractive and will look less dated in the future.
  • I like the old multicolored better, but I'm sure budget prevailed...It will look good either way
  • Didn't know this, but the JW Marriott will be the largest Marriott Hotel in the nation. That's pretty impressive for a hotel chain of that size.

    Looks like a solid project. 34 floors is no joke. Hopefully one day those guests staying in the Southern Facing Rooms have something other than a giant Power Plant to look at. If I were Marriott, I'd encourage Indy to wrap or facade those smoke stacks. That is a hideous view. You've got a really cool view of Victory Field and then... wham! A giant set of smoke stacks, kind of hard to ignore that. Other than that, looks great.

    If they could get a project going at the Market Square sight that would bookend Indy's Skyline nicely with the JW too.
  • This project will be up and running in time for the super bowl which is good news. But will Lucas Stadium be in receivership .... For Cryin out Loud
  • A 34 story building is impressive. Can anyone tell me how tall the One America building or the Chase tower are, just to get an idea of the size of this? Working on the southeast side of downtown it is nice to see this structure popping up above the other structures on the west side of downtown.
  • I believe the Chase Tower is 48 stories, while the One America is like 38. Keep in mind these are office towers which typically have higher floor-to-ceiling heights than hotels such as the JW do.
  • The Chase tower is 48 stories I believe.
  • What happened to all the Spicy Pickle restaurants in Indy?

    What about Del Taco opening locations here in Indy? Have those been put on hold?

    Any news on Jack in the Box?
  • This is a great project. The White family have truly put our city in a new league. Thanks.
  • According to Emporis, the JW will be 115 meters when complete, which will make it the 7th tallest buidling in the city. For reference, that's just behind the M&I Building (122m) and just taller than City County (113m).
  • Will any of the restaurants serve fish sticks?
  • Woot! Very nice and exciting. On a side note I hear Firehouse Subs will be opening Indy Locations!! I just moved back from Florida and I love them!
  • One note on aesthetics. To my knowledge, there is not a lot of color in the architecture of downtown Indianapolis. Browns, tans, off whites - yes. But no blue. And with this building literally at the west end of the city it will stand out. This building will have people talking about it's color, size - and the unique look to the city's urban topography.
  • Has anyone heard anything about projects like SoDo? The last time I heard anything was when we found out that Indy will be hosting the Super Bowl. I read that SoDo will be finished by the time we have the Super Bowl here. I was wondering since the economy has had such a down turn if this is still true.
  • To answer all those questions: Go ask your bankers what they did with their bailout money. Wasn't that supposed to free up lending?


    Glendale: Still lots of empty space.
  • dps dude: the new skin on the old INB tower downtown is blue.
  • Wouldn't it be nice for the state to sell the parking garage/empty space across the street from the JW Marriott? They could surely rebuild a parking garage in one of the empty lots the state owns just north of the state house. That space could be used for a future convention center expansion or perhaps a mixed use office tower/hotel/apartment building. Wishful thinking I know.......
  • When will the Friday's reopen at this location.? We missed last year while at the indian market.
  • The Friday's is not scheduled to reopen until the other hotels on the site are completed.
  • Friday's, really? You can buy their stuff in your local market in the freezer section.

    I must say, this project is shaping up much better than I had thought it would. It really will add a lot to the skyline and help to add some density on the west side. HOWEVER, the smaller towers are attrocious and should have the cement panels immediately removed and replaced with something different. I would love for the City to full-out ban EIFS and cement panels within the CBD.
  • Without a downtown TGI Fridays, Indy is just another second-tier city...
  • CoryW: Excellent point. Fridays is like Applebees except, well, except nothing. I cannot believe people eat that crap, unless of course you are stuck in some airport, like I will be tomorrow - I just know it.

    Applebees: You become what you eat!

    :needs more lard:
  • DaHooey - A little down on Friday's eh? Not sure why. And it's much different than Applebees. Anyway, we should be happy that the JW Marriott is still on its feet with the tight credit market. White's is taking a risk here, and they payoff will be there. Indy keeps getting better before our eyes. And once we clear up this CIB mess, Indy should be good to go for a while. Let the CIB thing linger, and it could spell trouble.

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  1. How much you wanna bet, that 70% of the jobs created there (after construction) are minimum wage? And Harvey is correct, the vast majority of residents in this project will drive to their jobs, and to think otherwise, is like Harvey says, a pipe dream. Someone working at a restaurant or retail store will not be able to afford living there. What ever happened to people who wanted to build buildings, paying for it themselves? Not a fan of these tax deals.

  2. Uh, no GeorgeP. The project is supposed to bring on 1,000 jobs and those people along with the people that will be living in the new residential will be driving to their jobs. The walkable stuff is a pipe dream. Besides, walkable is defined as having all daily necessities within 1/2 mile. That's not the case here. Never will be.

  3. Brad is on to something there. The merger of the Formula E and IndyCar Series would give IndyCar access to International markets and Formula E access the Indianapolis 500, not to mention some other events in the USA. Maybe after 2016 but before the new Dallara is rolled out for 2018. This give IndyCar two more seasons to run the DW12 and Formula E to get charged up, pun intended. Then shock the racing world, pun intended, but making the 101st Indianapolis 500 a stellar, groundbreaking event: The first all-electric Indy 500, and use that platform to promote the future of the sport.

  4. No, HarveyF, the exact opposite. Greater density and closeness to retail and everyday necessities reduces traffic. When one has to drive miles for necessities, all those cars are on the roads for many miles. When reasonable density is built, low rise in this case, in the middle of a thriving retail area, one has to drive far less, actually reducing the number of cars on the road.

  5. The Indy Star announced today the appointment of a new Beverage Reporter! So instead of insightful reports on Indy pro sports and Indiana college teams, you now get to read stories about the 432nd new brewery open or some obscure Hoosier winery winning a county fair blue ribbon. Yep, that's the coverage we Star readers crave. Not.

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