Kentucky considers sports venue PPP

The state’s tourism bureau released an open-ended RFP looking for a partner to build a sports complex, restaurant and meeting space in Louisville.

A Kentucky tourism agency is looking for a private sector partner to develop a sports entertainment complex in Louisville.

A request for proposals released by Kentucky Venues, which is governed by the state fair board, called for bids to build a sports complex, lounge, restaurant and meeting space on a 12-acre site near the intersection of I-65 and Crittenden Drive, in the state’s largest city. The venue must “be of high quality, compatible with an iconic, state-of-the-art sports and entertainment centre”, according to the RFP.

No price was listed for the project, but the RFP noted that any plan costing more than $25 million would require approval from the state’s general assembly. The RFP also gave little description of what kind of stadium the state is seeking. Bids are due by October 3.

Kentucky Venues – part of the state’s tourism bureau – already operates the Kentucky Exposition Centre, located close to the proposed site, as well as the Kentucky International Convention Centre.

Kentucky has been active in pursuing PPP opportunities, though mostly in the transportation sector. Last year, the state passed a law allowing for private financing and construction of large infrastructure projects and creating a Public Transportation Infrastructure Authority.