2-hotel tower planned near Bankers Life Fieldhouse

(Artist's rendering/Ratio Architects, Inc.)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Indianapolis’ downtown skyline may soon change again. An out-of-state developer wants to turn parking lots across the street from Bankers Life Fieldhouse into two, 15-story hotels.

The Starwood properties would stretch from Georgia Street to Chesapeake Street, the alley to the north before you hit Maryland Street. There will be retail space and 286 guest rooms. At 15 stories high, the hotels will also block the view for some loft residents and a nearby restaurant.

The Pub Owner, Gordon Cocke, says his fingers are crossed.

“My patio will be looking at a brick wall. But, maybe sometime we can look at that. Maybe changing around once we’ve seen what they’ve done,” said Cocke.

The city’s deputy mayor of economic development, Daron Kintner, understands Cocke’s concern. But, he also says this is great news.

“It’s competition. But, a lot of these projects bring in not only enough demand to support themselves, but also the areas around them,” said Kintner.

CSM Corp. out of Minneapolis wants to buy the property. They submitted a proposal for the hotels to the city’s historic preservation society. If all goes as planned, there’s hope for a green light by fall for the two-flag hotel.

“One is sort of a daily business hotel and the other is sort of an extended stay,” said Bill Browne, Ratio Architect president.

The hotels would be two Starwood properties combined under one roof. One will be the ALoft label and the other the Element brand. Both cater to a young, urban crowd.

“Whether it’s the millennial generation or not, but it’s certainly trying to cater to that urban, chic kind of user,” said Browne.

There will be two retail business, likely restaurants. It’s a development the city says may just be the incentive they need to bring concerts downtown to liven up the summer streets.

“Stay in the hotels, shop in the shops, eat in the restaurants — so, we certainly hope it would lead to that,” said Kintner.

Covered parking will be leased to Harness Loft residents. Their will be dramatically different. But, as Cocke says, they’ll just have to wait and see.

“We’ll kind of be blocked in by that, so. I guess you got to take the good with the bad,” said Cocke.

CSM Corp. is hoping to have project approval for the fall with a likely completion sometime toward the end of 2016.

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