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Speedway rounds a new lap with redevelopment
Drive on Main Street in Speedway, Indiana now, and you might do a double take -- between 10th and 16th streets, you'll see ornate light poles, welcome banners, fancy benches and landscaping, and an 8-foot-wide bike path.

To Speedway officials, the just-finished infrastructure upgrade and impending construction of Italian racing-car chassis builder Dallara's U.S. headquarters signal an acceleration of the neighborhood's planned resurgence, which is pinned on a mix of retail, business and entertainment offerings.

And the Speed Zone makeover is picking up speed right on time -- as the metro area gears up for this year's 100th anniversary of the Indianapolis 500 and the larger economy begins to recover.

The $500 million redevelopment will transform 350 acres south of the track into a racing-themed business and entertainment center. Plans include multistory retail and residential buildings along Main Street as well as commercial, office and light-industrial development throughout the area.

Expectations are bolstered by talks with three restaurants, two museum groups and motor-sports companies and teams, said Scott Harris, director of the Speedway Redevelopment Commission. A three- to four-star hotel also is being studied for 16th Street.

"We have something to show now, so we need to focus on how we can move forward as quickly as possible," said Rollie Helmling, head of the motor-sports initiative for the Indiana Economic Development Corp., about Speedway's plans. "I would anticipate significant development in the next two to three years." More at Indy Star

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