Indy Eleven is launching another push for a new stadium, this time pitching a new 20,000-seat venue as part of the proposed Eleven Park development.
Currently a member of USL Championship, Indy Eleven plays home matches at Lucas Oil Stadium–primarily home of the NFL’s Colts–but has proposed new stadiums in the past as part of MLS expansion efforts. The latest concept, unveiled Thursday, calls for a new 20,000-seat, multi-purpose stadium to be constructed as part of Eleven Park. Along with the new stadium, Eleven Park would feature roughly 150,000 square feet of office space, 100,000 square feet of retail, 600 apartment units, and a 200-room boutique hotel. The proposal was unveiled by the Indianapolis-based Keystone Development.
“This is more than a stadium,” Ersal Ozdemir, CEO of Keystone Group and owner of Indy Eleven, said in a press statement. “It is the opportunity to create a vibrant community that will attract individuals and families from near and far to live, work and play.”
Eleven’s announcement on Thursday indicated that the project’s site will be unveiled at a later date, but the Indianapolis Star has reported the campus of the shuttered Broad Ripple High School as a possibility. The use of the site has not been finalized, but it would offer the room for a project of this scope and Ozdemir has expressed interest in the property. More from the Indianapolis Star:
But Ozdemir, in a letter sent Nov. 13 to then-Indianapolis Public Schools Superintendent Lewis Ferebee and the IPS Board, wrote: “We were recently approached by Broad Ripple Village Association to consider moving this mixed-use project to the former Broad Ripple School. Their board is very supportive of this effort and will publicly advocate for this effort. Responding (to) community interest, we evaluated the site and would like to express our interest to acquire or enter into a long-term lease for the Broad Ripple High School site.”
Ozdemir outlined in the letter four elements of a potential deal: His company, Keystone Group, would either buy the campus or sign a lease with IPS; Keystone and its partners would develop the 16-acre site; IPS would have the option of using the stadium on Friday nights for football games; a public school would open on the site.
“The proposed layout could also possibly keep the 1,000 seat auditorium,” Ozdemir wrote. “We would work to find a partner to operate a community Performing Arts Center. Adjacent to the Performing Arts Center would be a 300-500 student public school.”
The letter does not include a proposed purchase price or an amount the team would pay the school district under a lease.
Per the club’s press release, the proposal calls for privately developing and financing “the office, retail, apartment and boutique hotel portions of the project. Taxes that are generated on the property as a result of the private development are proposed to be utilized to help finance the stadium and public areas which are proposed to be owned by the Capital Improvement Board and financed by the City of Indianapolis by developer backed bonds.”
The project will have some hurdles to clear at the local and state levels before moving forward, including approval from the Indiana General Assembly to designate the stadium site as a professional sports development area. Under that designation, any sales and income tax collected within the area would go toward paying off project debt.
Image courtesy Indy Eleven.