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Betting parlor setback resolved

Plans to move to New Haven still OK, but to different site

– Plans to move the Fort Wayne off-track betting parlor to New Haven stumbled a bit but are now back on track.

In December, the Indiana Horse Racing Commission approved a new location and redesign of the facility.

But last week, the commission modified the plans slightly to an alternative New Haven site.

The parlor was to move midyear to the Lincoln Plaza shopping center, near a Kroger and Bureau of Motor Vehicles branch, with more car and foot traffic.

Hoosier Park, the Anderson horse track that runs the off-track betting parlor and is owned by Centaur, had planned to invest $2 million at the new site.

But a petition filed with the racing commission said the Lincoln Plaza location fell through when a restrictive covenant was discovered.

That issue eventually was resolved, but Hoosier Park had found a more desirable location.

The parlor, to be renamed The Winner’s Circle Brewpub and OTB, will occupy two suites at the Lutheran Plaza on Minnich Road near Indiana 930.

The lease for more than 8,300 square feet is for five years.

Nearby businesses include Lutheran Health Network, Dollar General and a bingo hall.

The cost of the renovation is still expected to be about $2 million, and construction is expected to last three to four months.

The parlor will include a pub area with a high-quality menu, event space and seating for off-track betting. Smoking will be permitted.

The new site could open in September, with only a few weeks of shutdown time.

The city’s betting parlor has been operating at 1820 W. Washington Center Road since 1996. That land will be sold for construction of a hotel.

The petition said Hoosier Park has made arrangements with the purchasers of the existing facility to stay until at least Sept. 15 so the “risk of a prolonged closure of the Fort Wayne satellite facility has been minimized.”

The current parlor was described as “an unprofitable, tired, worn facility in a poor location” that appears empty even when occasionally busy.

nkelly@jg.net

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