Another Vikings Stadium Proposal, Another Set Of Issues

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — Just when you thought you’d heard every stadium idea imaginable, a new site is emerging and it could solve one of the Vikings’ concerns.

It’s a site close to the Metrodome that would let the Vikings keep playing in their old home while the new stadium is being built.

In the blocks just east of the Metrodome, near 11th Avenue and 6th Street, is the newest proposed site for a Vikings stadium.

Building in the back yard of the Mall of America Field would save the expense and time it would take to move the Vikings to TCF Stadium. The team would also be able to continue to play at the Metrodome until the new stadium is complete.

But this new site also has its issues.

“Xcel the company has some infrastructure there and you got the 511 building ,which also has quite a few telecommunications companies in there with quite a bit of infrastructure,” said Corry Merifield of Save the Vikes.

Merifield said it would cost a lot of money to relocate those buildings and all that come with it. For instance, some roads might have to be changed.

“You’ve got exits and entrances from [Interstate 94] and [Interstate 35W] coming in and out of there,” Merifield said.

Most of those freeway entrances would have to be changed, adding more to the cost of relocating and changing infrastructure to accommodate a new downtown stadium.

Vikings vice president Lester Bagley told MPR that just because there are properties doesn’t mean that the Vikings can build there. They would evaluate it, he said, but the organization has yet to see a viable proposal on an alternate Metrodome site.

Inside Grumpy’s Bar on Sunday, Viking’s fans sounded off about the potential stadium site.

“You could either tear down the Metrodome and build something there or go to another site. Don’t go across the street,” said Vikings fan Jesse Thorson.

Although there are extra costs associated with the site near the Metrodome, the Vikings previously said it would take about $11 million to get the Gophers’ stadium ready for NFL games. They also claimed they’d lose about $12 million in revenue each year they played there.

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  • Swamp Rat

    Sorry Minneapolis, Arden Hills gets better looking everyday. Also, casino, pull-tabs, and user fees can pay for the new venue. Now if only the GOP start acting like the fiscal Republicans they claim to be then the new stadium will be built.

    Also, with Federal assistance why can’t Minnesota have a new petroleum &/or alternative fuels refinery and facilities to process Canadian crude and shale sand crude oil? Just think of the tax revenues from that/those facilities for the state’s benefit. When is MN going to get out of the political and economic stone age we are in now? Think about!

    • Dave

      I agree, move to Arden HIlls. Isnt there enough stuff in Minneapolis. Why should they always be the ones to benefit. I heard their Mayor today say his plan would reduce the property taxes for Minneapolis. Other cities deserve an opportunity to benefit from a stadium

  • 511worker

    good luck moving most of the states internet and cell infrastructure out of 511. Unless someone throws tons of cash.I can’t see that not taking years after it’s taken years in court to break those leases.

  • oNiSaC

    How is it that Minneapolis has so much clout when it comes to sports?

    There is no parking site in Mpls. for 60,000 people.

    The Vikings owners are right, Arden Hills is where the news stadium should be. Because it has plenty of room (empty space), and major roads leading in and out.

    • Arvid

      That may be well and true, but what part of what the GOP has said about no taxes being raised in Ramsey county was too hard to understand? When there are games at the current football games it would appear there are no cars left abandonded in the middle of the street for a lack of parking

    • Arvid

      And it would appear you have never driven through Arden Hill during rush hour

  • roger

    Anyone who thinks there is infastructure at any other site than the dome has been inhaling too much exhaust while tailgating. I would like to give away my share of of any taxpayer investment In all pro-sports in Minnesota.

    • pappy12

      How come taxpayers never get ANYTHING offered back? Like a couple of choice seats every home game from a lottery system…..
      Why not remodel Gopher Stadium so both teams can play there, like the Cardinals and the Sun Devils….

  • silvertogold

    how pompous are these vikings supporters to think they can have the Minneapolis freeway system and 511 building restructured to accommodate themselves.

    And enough with the L.A. threat, if the deal were that good, these greedy thugs would already be committed – these whiny little pimples need to shut up and take what is offered and the taxpayers discretion.

    • sickandtired

      Amen to that. Very well said.

  • Roger

    Remember the Twins were going to Florida in a new taxpayer stadium! The Floridians voted NO! If someone wanted the Vikes, Minnesota would be history in a heartbeat.

  • fitswell

    let them move if they want who cares, they never win anyhow

    • Brett Jennings

      Uhhh,shows how much you know! The Vikings have 29 division titles,9 Championship appearences and 4 Super Bowl appearences! They have been to the post season more times than all the teams but 2. That’s right ,the Vikings have the 3rd most playoff apps in the NFL! Oh,but they never win! What a hoser

  • ditwiler

    Nobody other than the loud drunken tailgaters want the Vikings anymore. Send the losers packing! We have far better ways to spend taxpayer money.

    • not the right way to do things

      that being? More welfare recipients? Higher salaries for teachers? More State employees? More rail systems that underserve and need more tax payer funds to run? More bike paths used by less than 1% of the population? How about more DNR land that they can not maintain that pays no taxes? More drinking fountains? To enact more laws that punish the hard working and reward the criminals? What exactly is your idea of a better way to spend my tax dollars?

      • Nate

        Slow down there. We’ve got to get this whole gay marriage thing figured out first.

      • Kelly

        Don’t spend it, don’t take it out of my check.

        If the vikes want a stadium and it brings in so much business, perhaps those business who profit from the stadium should pay for it. Let the bars where the fans hang out pre/post game send in there money, let the parking ramps send in there money. If it’s so good for the economy and brings in so much business, that business that it bring in should be able to pay for a new stadium, if they are not able to, then I guess the stadium didn’t bring in the cash as everyone is claming and the increse in business can not justify a stadium.

  • The Analyst

    The local media continue to be Zygi’s lapdogs.

    The story is should this be done?
    The story is who is going to pay?
    The story is which politicians are clueless?

    Zygi doesn’t care where the stadium is. He wants public money invested in his franchise so that when he sells it he can reap a bigger profit. Hundreds of millions of extra dollars in profit.

    This is like when the state gave money to North West Airlines to create jobs on the iron range. That didn’t work out to good.

    • Brett Jennings

      Well,Ask Baltimore how the Colts leaving worked out for them. Devistated that city

  • Dan

    Why did the Shakopee site get shelved so quickly? It seems like all these Minneapolis sites are just trying to shoehorn the stadium into a space where it really won’t fit while, at the same time, shoving more taxes (call them other things but the citizens of Minneapolis should be wise by now) down our throats.

    This I do know: I don’t want to pay for any part of a new stadium for any sports team. You bought the car, you put the gas in it, Zygi. Pro sports teams do nothing for me.

    We certainly don’t need another white elephant like Target Center…Did you know we will have to replace or significantly upgrade that arena in the next 12 years or the T-wolves will move? When will it end?

    If the Vikings can’t afford it on their own, let them move. Please. It’s time to focus on things that really matter in this state. As long as taxes can’t cover the needs in our schools, roads, fire and police protection, and helping the homeless get back on their feet, sports is definitely not at the top of that list. It’s time to get our priorities straight.

    • Chuck

      Really? Open your mind a little please. Sports do nothing for you. But what about those of us that love our Minnesota sports? Hey, museums, libraries, roads and heck let’s throw in schools don’t matter to me….directly. But I support these things because it raises the quality of life of my fellow Minnesotans. It goes both ways here.

    • not the right way to do things

      This I know, I do not go to any stadiums to watch the vikings play and I hardly watch them on television, but I am sick and tired of paying for what you want and not for what other people want. I no longer want to pay for a never ending list of new state employees. I no longer want to pay for families that never break the poverty chain and live on public assisstance one generation to the next. I no longer want to pay for the TEN EXTRA BUSSES that come from Gary indiana to minneapolis, oddly enough the first ten days of the month when food stamps are handed out. I no longer want to pay for a never ending list of ideas of better and more efficient ways to give away my money to people that have not worked in Minnesota, EVER. I am tired of my money being used to buy Teacher union and state employee union votes.

      • Lee L.


        Megabus, a private company, transports people from Gary to the Cities. You pay nothing for them, since megabus is 100% privately owned. In fact, since their ticket fees go towards paying for gas for those vehicles and those gas taxes go to paying for local roads in sprawled out suburbs, those people from Gary subsidize your wasteful lifestyle rather than the other way around.

  • Mr T

    I thought there was a deadline like a thursday several weeks ago for all stadium plans wish washy Dayton. But wait lets do what we can for MPLS there late coming to the party sorry Rybak but you have a few more things too worry about than the stadium you need to get your counsel to by into the kickback you will be getting for the stadium in MPLS. how sad let the people decide and that looks like a big NO

    • Jeff

      Learn how to write English! Your paragraph makes little sense!

  • BledPurple45yrs

    Good concept, wrong direction — go [just a little] West, Vikes! The Strib owns the 5+ square blocks there that could accomodate the footprint of a new football-only stadium. After it’s built the old Dome’s land would provide all the space required for new Strib offices, parking ramp and a lot for tailgating — sheltered from those lovely NW breezes by the new stadium’s structure.

  • SM

    The Vikings need to take what the state is willing to offer (not that the state owes them anything). Otherwise, Los Angeles is calling!

  • gene robinson

    whycan’t the State Fairgrounds be used? it 10 weekends ayear andthe state could rent some spots for food companies,and think of the parking and tailfgating.THE STATE could charge rent. Ou legiislators have changed so many laws,how aout this possibility.?

  • Just the facts...

    -Fact: a new stadium will support 13,000 jos, including 7,500 full and part time construction jobs with 300mil in wages.
    – Fact: Upon completion a new stadium and the Vikings will employ @ 3,400 full and part time jobs.
    – Fact: the Vikings pay $20mil annually in state and local taxes. Visting teams pay @$1mil.
    – Fact: The dome was built for $55mil, with $33mil in public dollars. The state contributed NONE of ths money but has received over $320mil since it opened

    So if Dayton wants to create jobs and revneue for this state makes sense to me to keep the Vikings here. If a dump like the dome can create this many jobs and that much revenue what will a nice new one produce? Better then giving our money to welfare bums and schools that seem to fail our kids.

    • Swamp Rat

      @Just the facts….
      Interesting comments here. Now is anyone reading this? Maybe those GOP/Tea-Party tyros in the Legislature should take note!

      The only disagreement to your arguments and facts is the “welfare bums” and “schools seem to fail our kids” comments. That’s another can of worms to be looked at on another day. Arden Hills is getting better looking by the second.

  • Enright

    Minnesota gave away the best home field advantage in football when they put up that hothouse dome. Rip off the roof and bring back a next-generation Bud Grant in a windbreaker at 20-below, and the Vikes will once again command the respect of the league.

  • mannex67

    The Riverside Plaza site is an excellent idea!

  • Theodore Hansen

    You guys have to consider the fact that Minnesota will be losing all tax revenue generated from players salaries, entertainment taxes, business-generated revenue and many, many other taxed businesses that would not be generating anywhere near the same revenue and ergo, taxes without 8 home games a year. When you look at it in terms of cash flow, how can the state afford to just let the Vikes walk? The Wilf’s have already offered more than any other NFL team…ever. Pull your head out of the sand and think through all the angles. People are more concerned about a half-cent sales tax; yes, half-cent, than they are about a state asset leaving. If you can’t do the math, stay out of the argument. Losing the Vikings means losing revenues. This seems like a fairly easy decision considering a $900 million surplus. If you do not invest your retained earnings into areas that promote further growth and revenue generation, you are shooting yourself in the foot. Wake the hell up!

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