SBD/February 10, 2014/Facilities

Construction On "Daytona Rising" Project Slows As Track Prepares For Speedweeks

DIS' renovation project is now at the seven-month mark in the 2½-year project
Construction on the $400M "Daytona Rising" renovation project at Daytona Int'l Speedway will "slow to a crawl" this week as the track prepares for its '14 Speedweeks, according to Godwin Kelly of the Daytona Beach NEWS-JOURNAL. At the seven-month mark in the 2½-year project, the "attention has shifted back to race-ready preparations before hundreds of thousands of race fans descend on the Speedway for a variety of racing events." DIS President Joie Chitwood III said, “What we are really working on is building several temporary structures right now; things like temporary ticketing, suite lobbies and hospitality areas. That has really been our focus for the last month, turning the property into an operational property and not a construction zone.” He added, "You won't see the cranes moving. There will be no construction, no workers. It will be fenced in and screened off. Race fans can look at it, but there will be no activity in those areas.” Chitwood said the Jan. 25-26 Rolex 24 at Daytona was a "good opportunity for us to see how the property is going to work for Speedweeks and we learned a couple of things." Kelly notes the "other aspect of Chitwood's race-ready game plan is educating Speedweeks ticketholders to new foot-traffic flow to the main grandstand area." DIS has "mailed and emailed maps and explanations of the property to those planning to attend events" (Daytona Beach NEWS-JOURNAL, 2/10).

GAZE INTO THE CRYSTAL BALL: In Daytona Beach, Jeffrey Cassady previewed what the completed DIS renovations will look like in '16, noting the speedway's exterior will include a "new facade -- complete with a quarter-mile-long 'Daytona International Speedway' sign -- designed to evoke images of the speeding cars that can be found on the track." The building "will be difficult to recognize." Rossetti Design Principal Jim Renne, whose architectural firm designed the speedway's renovations, said, "There is actually a facade that grandstands don't typically have." He added that the surface of the facade will "bend and angle to give the building the look of a racing automobile in motion" (Daytona Beach NEWS-JOURNAL, 2/9).
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