LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) – Churchill Downs Incorporated announced it is investing approximately $60 million to construct a state-of-the-art historical racing machine (“HRM”) facility in Louisville.
The 85,000-square-foot facility will be built at 4520 Poplar Level Road—Churchill Downs’ former Trackside (also known as the former Sports Spectrum) site. That site is conveniently located less than half a mile from the Poplar Level Road exit off the Henry Watterson Expressway (I-264).
CDI’s request to offer exotic wagering on historical racing was conditionally approved by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission Tuesday afternoon.
PHOTOS: Churchill Downs Inc.'s plans for former Trackside site
“A state-of-the-art historic racing facility will allow us to deliver an exciting and compelling pari-mutuel product for our customers in Louisville. This is a great opportunity for us to revitalize another area of our city while strengthening the Commonwealth’s equine industry through larger purses and greater incentives for Kentucky breeders and owners,” Churchill Downs Racetrack President Kevin Flanery said. “Stronger horse racing means a stronger Kentucky.”
The company says 450 jobs will be created for the local economy, including 250 construction jobs. An estimated 200 new full- and part-time jobs will be created to operate and manage the facility. Churchill Downs will hire both hourly and salaried employees in areas including operations, marketing, finance, food and beverage, maintenance, information technology, human resources, security and administration. Job fairs will be held at Trackside for the neighborhoods surrounding the facility and the Churchill Downs Racetrack.
The planned facility will house two quick-service, walk-up food venues, as well as a bar with seating for 50 and large format televisions for guests to take in all the best sporting action year-round. The facility will open with 600 historical racing machines and a player’s club reward center offering special perks and benefits, including an exclusive parking area for loyal guests.
Construction is slated to begin later in 2017, and CDI hopes to open the facility by summer of 2018.