BALTIMORE (WJZ)– In just weeks, the green flag will drop on the Grand Prix of Baltimore. Right now, construction crews are beginning to lay the ground work for the IndyCar race.
Monique Griego speaks exclusively with the man responsible for bringing the track to life.
You’ve probably already seen the fencing and some grandstands downtown. Now, crews are beginning the tough job of placing all the barriers on the streets.
In less than two weeks, the streets of downtown Baltimore will transform into a full-blown IndyCar racetrack as the Grand Prix of Baltimore once again revs through the city.
“It’s a lot of excitement, something new to see,” a Baltimore resident said.
“It will definitely be exciting. There will be a lot of action,” Tony Cotman of NZR Consulting, the firm contracted to build the circuit, said.
Cotman said that so far, crews have been working through the night to put up the fencing. But Saturday night, the real work started.
“The concrete barriers go into place, and then the fence on top of barriers,” he said.
The track is being built in sections and the busiest areas will be saved for last.
“The goal this year was to keep businesses open and trying to impact the community as least as possible,” Cotman said.
This year, designers did make a few tweaks to the track with the hope that it makes for a faster and more exciting race in some points.
“No. 1: To benefit the spectator,” Cotman said. “On Conway, we can put it right underneath the people. It’s fantastic, easy to see.”
While organizers are doing their best to keep the city moving during construction, just like last year, building something this big on the streets of a busy city is going to cause congestion.
“You have a lot of detours,” Deborah Jolley, who is planning to attend the race, said. “It’s very challenging but it’s also exciting. I’m just happy to have an event. Streets don’t bother me.”
And that’s the attitude construction crews hope others have as we count down the days until the Grand Prix rolls around and spectators can pack these stands again.
“We hope we have a fantastic crowd like last year and we can entertain them,” Cotman said.
The Grand Prix kicks off Labor Day weekend, which is Aug. 31 through Sept. 2.
For more information about tickets and other information about the event, click here.