Reality Check: ‘Walk Away’ Clause In Vikes Stadium Deal

ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) — Governor Mark Dayton is hoping his stadium blitz at the State Capitol will end with a Vikings vote by Thanksgiving.

But not before the Vikings agree to a series of conditions, including a legal promise not to walk away from the deal.

Why? It’s because the Vikings have rejected multiple stadium proposals in the last decade and walked away from at least one they actually agreed to.

That’s why Dayton’s demanding a ‘walk-away’ clause in writing.

“I made it clear that there cannot be any kind of walkaway rights for anybody in this project,” said Dayton after meeting with Vikings team owner Zygi Wilf on Thursday. “The team, the county and the state. We’re  all going to be in it.”

In fact, the Vikings have rejected at least seven previous stadium proposals since 1999, all of which spent millions in public dollars to develop.

And they actually signed a deal with Anoka County in 2005.

It’s true. In 2005, the team agreed to a $790 million, retractable-roof facility in Blaine.

The Purple scored a stadium, but Anoka County got sacked.

Here’s what you need to know: Taxpayers spent $1 million developing the Anoka site, but the Vikings vamoosed a year later.

The Vikings are now partners with Ramsey County.

A $1.1 billion stadium in Arden Hills is a deal they can’t walk away from even if they want to.

Here are some sources that were used for this story.

HHH Metrodome info
Metrodome renovation
Vikings, Anoka County Stadium deal
Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission
MSFC Meeting info from 2008
Metrodome Reconstruction Analysis

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