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City of Indianapolis to take over financing of Hilton Signia Hotel

Posted at 3:08 PM, May 07, 2023
and last updated 2023-05-08 17:43:51-04

INDIANAPOLIS — The city of Indianapolis will take over the construction of the Hilton Signia Hotel moving forward, according to the Hogsett administration.

The administration says there will be no new taxes involved in funding this project, as it will be funded through hotel revenue bonds.

“The redevelopment of Pan Am Plaza and expansion of the Convention Center is a transformative project that will help secure Indianapolis’s place as the top host city in the country," Mayor Joe Hogsett said in a statement. "It will preserve and add thousands of hospitality and construction jobs, and inject even more energy into a thriving downtown, all at no additional expense to taxpayers.”

The construction of the Signia Hotel will cost an estimated $510 million. It's part of the larger redevelopment of the Pan Am Plaza and Convention Center, an expansion that is estimated to cost around $710 million.

The construction was previously being financed by Kite Realty Group, however, the developer informed the City earlier this year that they were not able to secure private financing based on current market condition.

The Hogsett administration says their fiscal approach, including 'six straight balanced budgets' passed by the City-County Council secures available funding.

"The public ownership model eliminates private profits," said a Hogsett spokesperson. "Under the City’s ownership, all hotel revenues go toward operations of the hotel and repaying the bond holders. The City, in part because of its strong credit history, can borrow against those hotel revenues at better rates."

Kite Realty remains the developer for the project, but because of the change in financing, the City will be the sole owner upon completion.

Pan Am Plaza

The development of the Pan Am Plaza and Convention Center was originally approved by the Capital Improvement Board in 2018.

The 300,000-square-foot expansion to the Indiana Convention Center will include the following upgrades:

  • A 50,000-square-foot ballroom
  • Meeting rooms
  • Full kitchen facility
  • Connection to current convention center through walkway
  • Two new hotels -- would add about 1,400 rooms to Indy's hotel inventory

The CIB says that the hotels will allow Visit Indy to bid on more than 200 conventions that were previously unavailable due to limited hotel space.