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A dive into Keeneland’s $93 million project

A rendering of the new Paddock Building.

A rendering of the new Paddock Building. | Photo courtesy of Keeneland

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Keeneland announced its largest renovation project in the nearly 90 years it’s been in operation.

The $93 million project will bring brand new experiences to the grounds, including an on-site restaurant + bar, as well as improved saddling stalls for a safer equine environment. So far, the project has received approval from the Kentucky Tourism Development Finance Authority for incentives up to $23.2 million.

A rendering of the interior of the Paddock area.

This rendering shows what the inside of the Paddock Building area could look like. | Photo courtesy of Keeneland

The new Paddock Building

Construction on the 100,000-sqft Paddock Building will begin in January 2024, where a three-story building will be erected in the current location of the administrative building + Jockeys Quarters.

Racing fans don’t fret, meets and other experiences will continue to operate during construction.

Upon completion, it will host various ticketed experiences, offering amenities like:

  • Sit-down dining
  • New bar concepts including a panoramic rooftop
  • New jockeys quarters
  • Up to 1,400 additional tickets

Here, you’ll be able to enjoy views of Keeneland’s campus and get a front row seat as jockeys walk from the brand-new quarters onto the track.

A rendering of the new saddling stalls in the Paddock Building.

New saddling stalls aim to provide more room for both horses and jockeys. | Photo courtesy of Keeneland

Other improvements

To accommodate the new Paddock Building, Keeneland will also construct a two-story building that will help consolidate administrative offices, operations teams, as well as a still-in-development Visitors Center.

But the renovations go beyond the public and jockey experience — improvements to equine life are also in the works.

Current saddling stalls will be shifted to create a larger, safer environment for the horses, while also giving fans a one-of-a-kind view of the trusty steeds.

“The improvements to our saddling processes are not only functional in providing more space for horses and horsemen, but the results will offer unobstructed views to showcase the beauty and pageantry of our equine and human athletes,” said Shannon Arvin, president and CEO of Keeneland.

Architectural firm Populous will help with the renovations, keeping true to Keeneland’s stonework-centric design.

Keeneland projects the spaces will be completed by Fall 2025.

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