Indianapolis Motor Speedway Transformed
INDIANAPOLIS, IN Last month, hundreds of thousands of race fans converged on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (IMS) to watch the 100th running of the race known as the "greatest spectacle in racing." When they arrived, they were greeted by a facility transformed - one with more room for fans, more amenities and a world-class style befitting one of the most prestigious sporting events in the world.
Fans entering through Gate 1 from the roundabout on Crawfordsville Road found a whole new Legends Plaza - the grand entrance to the IMS facility.
The Legends Plaza renovation is part of Project 100, a much larger renovation project the IMS began in 2013 to prepare for this year's race. The goal of Project 100 is to provide more modern amenities and technologies for fans while retaining the historic nature of the track they love.
Project 100 is managed by Hunt Construction who brought F.A. Wilhelm Construction on board to handle all the hardscaping, concrete sidewalks and pavement for the new Legends Plaza.
The pavement is one of the most striking features of the plaza. Inside the gate, Wilhelm crews installed 100,000 square feet of decorative concrete paving set in a checkered flag pattern. Kent James, Wilhelm Project Manager, said each pattern is made up of alternating, 15 by 15 foot sections of light concrete and onyx-colored concrete - a premium material providing dramatic contrast.
Wilhelm crews worked around the mature trees by placing decorative paving around them and leaving plenty of room around the edges for the 70 new trees to be planted. Wilhelm also installed custom concrete trashcans, bike racks and huge, pre-cast concrete benches weighing about two tons each with wood-slatted inlays made of mahogany.
Nick Duncan, Project Manager for Hunt Construction, said the project started in January and was completed by May 1.
To pull it off, Wilhelm crews erected temporary plastic canopies and used maxi heaters and ground thaw machines inside to make sure the ground didn't freeze overnight. "We took it head-on with regard to preparing for winter conditions," James said. "It's gone very well this winter."