The Indiana State Fair Commission has awarded the first four contracts for a planned renovation of the fairgrounds' coliseum that will keep the building on the sidelines during next year's fair.
Commission members approved contracts Thursday totaling more than $3 million for interior demolition, foundation work, new steel and other structural work. The four contracts are the first of several needed for the $71 million upgrade of the coliseum.
The work on the building that that opened in 1939 and hosted The Beatles' only Indiana concert in 1964 will start this fall and take it out of action during next year's fair. The project should be completed by the 2014 fair.
The coliseum has hosted sporting, musical and other events over the years.