09/09/2004 11:00PM

BC plans coming to life

Lone Star Park
This foundation will support apron-level box seats at Lone Star. The bleachers in the background contain individual stadium-style seats.

GRAND PRAIRIE, Texas - It's starting to look a lot like the Breeders' Cup is coming to Lone Star Park. The track is making progress on the installation of 38,000 temporary seats for the World Thoroughbred Championships, which will be held at the Dallas-area track on Oct. 30. The expected crowd for Breeders' Cup Day is 50,000.

Some of the temporary seats are bleacher-like in appearance, but are actually individual, stadium tip-up chairs built in ascending fashion. The track is also in the process of building bases for apron-level box seats located directly in front of the bleachers. The seating project is being overseen by the Alabama-based Colonnade Group Inc.

When finished, seating will extend from around the far turn, through the homestretch, and into the first turn, said Darren Rogers, spokesman for Lone Star.

The track also plans to install at least three large video boards in the infield. In all, $8.5 million in improvements will be made to Lone Star for the Breeders' Cup.

In other projects, Belt Line Road, which runs in front of Lone Star, has recently been expanded from four lanes to six, with additional turn lanes into the main entrance of the track. The project involved the city of Grand Prairie and the Texas Department of Transportation.

Lone Star will run a special 19-date fall meet, beginning on Oct. 1, to accommodate the Breeders' Cup. Most of the temporary seats will be in place by then, said Lone Star president Corey Johnsen.