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Stalled hotel construction project in Speedway frustrates residents

Posted at 7:13 PM, Oct 31, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-31 19:13:54-04

SPEEDWAY — Some call the corner of 16th and Main Streets the most valuable space in Speedway, but a partially finished hotel construction project at the spot has been left abandoned for months and residents want answers.

Marie Hall owns Three Sisters and a Truck on Main Street. Hall said the property across from the Indianapolis Motor Speedway is nothing more than an eyesore and she is worried about what's next for the corner where The Tapestry Collection by Hilton hotel is planned.

"It is a disgrace," she said. "Raw concrete and elevator shafts and that is it. They walked away at the end of June and we've seen no one on the site since."

RTV6 reached out to the developer in August after noticing the work stoppage. At that time, Drew Loftus or Loftus Robinson said they were working through design coordination and approvals, but he said construction would resume soon.

Now, months later there is still no progress.

"The unknown is always frightening," Hall said. "I don't know what is going to happen, but we gave a lot to have this built."

A Speedway representative said the town has tried to contact Loftus Robinson for updates, but hasn't had much luck. The town's Economic Development Administration guidelines allow for a 181-day work stoppage, and they are still in that window.

“Our Speedway Redevelopment Commission has requested further details from Loftus Robinson on the current work stoppage to evaluate if we can help mitigate issues they might be facing," Speedway Economic Development director Tim Gropp said. "We have worked hard on the revitalization of Main Street, undergoing many redevelopment projects, and we understand the challenges that inherently come with development. We remain dedicated to this project and hope to see Loftus Robinson's continued involvement in its successful completion. “

Lauren Debettencourt, a spokesperson for Hotels by Hilton, said the hotel is currently scheduled to open in the third quarter of 2020.

However, Hall is still concerned.

"I know they had good intentions, and they thought it was going to be different, but this is not what the residents of Speedway agreed upon," she said.