Pacers Sports and Entertainment is partnering with Indiana-based Cunningham Restaurant Group, the group behind popular eateries like Bru Burger and Livery, to run a new entertainment and restaurant venue at Bicentennial Unity Plaza, according to a Tuesday news release.
The venue, which the entertainment company is developing from a parking lot at the corner of Delaware Street and East Maryland, will be a 30,000-square-foot, two-level space with a basement called Commission Row. The project is being privately funded, according to previous IndyStar reporting.
The project was first announced last year and received approval from the Indiana Historic Preservation Commission. The release said that Pacers Sports and Entertainment is hoping to have the entertainment and restaurant district complete in time for the NBA All-Star game in February 2024.
“Commission Row is an exciting new entertainment amenity in the heart of our city, an important addition on Bicentennial Unity Plaza that will enhance this entire quadrant of our vibrant downtown,” Pacers owner Herb Simon said in the release. “We are thrilled about the opportunity to partner with Cunningham Restaurant Group, which operates some of the city’s best culinary offerings.”
The space will include a basement speakeasy called Mel’s, a steakhouse and seafood restaurant and a private event space on the upper level with capacity for more than 200 attendees.
Cunningham Restaurant Group was founded by current CEO Mike Cunningham in 1997. The company owns and operates restaurants in three states, including Indiana. Cunningham restaurants include Bru Burger, Livery, Mesh, Modita and Café 251, all with locations in downtown Indianapolis.
The plans for Commission Row are separate from the $360 million public and private funding to renovate Gainbridge Fieldhouse. The renovations include padded seats, scoreboard, bars and concession stands, as well as an entry pavilion expansion and an outdoor plaza. The renovations are expected to be fully complete in May.
That renovation project includes about $270 million in state and Marion County’s Capital Improvement Board funding as well as about $25 million from the city of Indianapolis.
Reporter Binghui Huang contributed to this report.
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This article originally appeared on Indianapolis Star: New venue by Indiana Pacers’ arena to be operated by Bru Burger owner