Cordish project set in Fla.

Mixed-use development planned near speedway

May 09, 2007|By Lorraine Mirabella | Lorraine Mirabella,Sun reporter

Baltimore-based developer The Cordish Co. is planning a $250 million mixed-use development across from the Daytona International Speedway, home of the Daytona 500, in a joint venture with a subsidiary of racing promoter International Speedway Corp., which owns the 71-acre site on Florida's northern Atlantic coast.

The project, Daytona Live!, would shift from a lunch and retail destination during the day to a dining and entertainment district at night, with preliminary plans for 200,000 square feet of shops and restaurants, a 2,500-seat movie theater, housing, a 160-room hotel and headquarters offices for International Speedway Corp., National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing Inc. (NASCAR) and Grand-Am.

David S. Cordish, chairman of Cordish, said yesterday that the joint venture is making plans for additional mixed-use projects at other ISC-owned speedways across the country. The Cordish Co. has similar partnerships with owners of major league sports teams and has agreements to build a mix of shops, offices, hotels and housing around ballparks and stadiums in cities such as St. Louis, Kansas City, Mo., San Francisco, Pittsburgh and Philadelphia.

The concept will be similar in the speedway-anchored "villages," Cordish said.

"You partner with the owner of the anchor, and then build hotels, office buildings, residential and entertainment around the anchor, to make the anchor a 365-day venue, so it increases the value of the franchise and gives us a built-in traffic generator for our village," Cordish said. "This one is directly across the street from the Daytona speedway."

Leasing and design work has begun on the Daytona Live! project. Plans are under way for a second joint venture project at another ISC speedway, Cordish said.

"We really envision a number of projects," he said. "We're already into the second one, and have already visited a third and are talking about a fourth. They're a major company with a lot of opportunity."

ISC, a promoter of more than 100 racing events, owns or operates 13 motor-sports facilities in cities such as Detroit, Richmond, Va., and New York. The company plans to develop on excess land at its speedways, Cordish said.

ISC officials could not be reached yesterday. In a statement, ISC President Lesa France Kennedy said the company chose Cordish because of its success in similarly styled developments around the country.

The developer's entertainment-oriented revitalization projects include Power Plant Live! in Baltimore, the Hard Rock Hotel and Casinos in Hollywood and Tampa, Fla., Fourth Street Live! in Louisville, Ky., and Bayou Place in Houston.

Cordish also has begun opening themed NASCAR Sports Grilles, the first of which opened just over a month ago in Orlando, Fla., with others opening this year in Myrtle Beach, S.C., Charlotte, N.C., and Hampton Roads, Va.

International Speedway also said yesterday that it would put up for sale 675 acres on New York City's Staten Island after scrapping plans to build a NASCAR track on the site.

Florida's France family controls International Speedway and closely held NASCAR.

Bloomberg News contributed to this article.

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