Churchill Downs set to receive $135 million facelift

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WTVQ) – Churchill Downs is getting a $135 million facelift, some of which is expected to be ready for Kentucky Derby 2022.

Wednesday, Churchill Downs announced three projects for the Louisville racetrack.

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Plans include the debut of a new project each year over the next three years, beginning with the Homestretch Club.

According to Churchill Downs, the Homestretch Club will include an updated grandstand area, converting the current outdoor bleacher seating with all-inclusive amenities. That includes access to more than 18,000 sq. feet of new hospitality space. The $45 million project is scheduled for completion of the Derby next May.

The Turn One Experience will upgrade and expand the roughly 3,400 temporary Oaks and Derby seats to more than 5,100 permanent stadium seats with improved amenities, according to Churchill Downs.

The Paddock Area redesign is in the early design stage and is tentatively scheduled to debut in the 150th Kentucky Derby.

You can read more about the upgrades HERE.

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Erica joins the ABC 36 family as a Co-Anchor of Good Morning Kentucky weekday mornings from 5am-7am with Cody Adams and Good Day Kentucky weekday mornings from 9am to 10am. She is also a Web and Social Media Content Producer. Erica graduated in three and a half years from Michigan State University with a Bachelor's degree in Broadcast Journalism and specialization in Women, Gender and Social Justice. Although she hails from Michigan, Erica has worked as a News Reporter/Sports Anchor for the CBS-affiliate in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands. Prior to that, she worked for a PBS-affiliate there covering all types of news – even providing live reports for The Weather Channel during her first hurricane. She then moved to Lake Charles, Louisiana and worked as the Weekend Anchor/Reporter at KPLC, the NBC/FOX/CW affiliate. Erica comes to Lexington from the Huntington area where she worked at WSAZ, an NBC/CW affiliate in West Virginia, as a weekday evening anchor covering the tri states of Ohio and Kentucky as well. In addition to her background on TV, Erica has worked in radio, served as the PA announcer for the Class A "Lansing Lugnuts" and hosted Carnival parades in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Some of her favorite hobbies include running, reading, hiking, spending time with her husband and taking pictures of their furbabies. Erica is big on community involvement, having served as a board member for Dress for Success, volunteered as a Big with Big Brothers Big Sisters, worked on the Mayor's Armed Forces Commission in Lake Charles and hosted countless events. She hopes you can connect with her on Facebook: EricaBivensTV and on Twitter: @ericabivens or Instagram: erica.bivens. You can also email her at ebivens@wtvq.com. Please send all event inquiries via email. Erica is excited to explore Lexington and the outdoors and - of course - meet all of you!