The big dig is on. Construction on a new Vikings stadium is well underway. In fact, it’s going so fast that the demolition of the old Dome could happen soon. Mortenson Construction Company, the builder of the new stadium, has already removed 100,000 tons of dirt, creating a vast hole that is essentially a foundation for the new facility. Workers are putting in the pilings to secure the outer perimeter. All of this is in preparation for the last Dome event: the Vikings game against the Lions on Dec. 29.
There’s more objection surrounding the new Vikings stadium on Thursday, a little more than a week after officials broke ground on one of the largest construction projects in Minnesota history. Except this time it literally deals with areas surrounding the new stadium.
The Minnesota Vikings and Wells Fargo have reached a preliminary agreement to resolve a conflict surrounding a development near the team’s new stadium. Vikings vice president of stadium development Lester Bagley says the agreement was reached on Saturday night. It establishes parameters for roof signage on a new Wells Fargo tower close to the new Vikings stadium in downtown Minneapolis. The Vikings were concerned that the proposed signing violated city ordinances and would deter other companies from pursuing naming rights deals for the new stadium.
The Minnesota Vikings have broken ground on their new stadium. Team owners and officials were joined by hundreds of local politicians, business leaders and purple-clad fans Tuesday morning to commemorate the start of construction on the billion-dollar project.
Politicians, Vikings executives and possibly a few notable former players will be on hand at the groundbreaking ceremony for the team’s new, $1 billion stadium. The Tuesday morning program inside the soon-to-be-demolished Metrodome is open to the public, but there are only a few hundred seats available.
For more than three decades, the weekend after Thanksgiving has been special for high school football players. This weekend will be the last time the Prep Bowl will be held at the Metrodome. The venue is coming down to make way for a new Vikings stadium. For Noah Rockholl, the quarterback on last year’s football team, Friday is a special day. “You can drive through the streets of Underwood today and I guarantee you won’t see a single person or a car in the town,” Rockholl said. “The whole the whole town’s here.”
Why are Iron Rangers upset with the Vikings Stadium project? Listen to Dave and Brian.
Former state House member Tom Rukavina says he’s annoyed that the new Vikings stadium requires ore from overseas. Mortenson Construction executive John Wood told the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority that some high-grade steel will be imported from Europe. He says officials are ordering from a Luxembourg manufacturer that’s a global provider of the extra-strength steel. Wood says the 7,000 tons of steel that make up the perimeter can be drawn domestically, but even that will probably have only small traces of Minnesota in it.
Backers of the $1 billion Vikings stadium regularly tout the project as an economic driver that will boost the state’s construction industry and rely heavily on Minnesota-derived materials. Construction planners showed last week that those goals are easier stated than achieved.
The Minnesota Vikings say they’ll raise their contribution to a new stadium to more than $500 million to make sure the project has everything they want. Vice President Lester Bagley says the extra money is the only way to preserve the design and features in the new stadium, which will now cost more than $1 billion.
The groundbreaking for the new Minnesota Vikings stadium will be on Tuesday, Dec. 3. The Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority confirmed the date Tuesday. It’s the official start of construction on the nearly $1 billion football stadium that will be built at the current Metrodome site.
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The public authority in charge of the new Minnesota Vikings stadium is tying up loose ends before construction can get underway next month. The head of the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority said Friday that the project is “beginning to move at lightning speed” as the mid-November groundbreaking. Next week a key pricing report is due from the lead contractor that could reflect cost pressures on the $975 million stadium. The Vikings must certify their $477 million share for the project by early November. Soon after, the state will sell bonds toward the $477 million public contribution.
A Minnesota legislative panel formed to keep tabs on the Vikings stadium deal is meeting to go over a recently signed lease and the development agreement. The Legislative Commission on Minnesota Sports Facilities lacks power to alter the agreements.
Eight banks are teaming to underwrite hundreds of millions of dollars in Minnesota bonds to finance construction of the new Vikings stadium. Management and Budget has notified the banks they were selected from a group of 22 that submitted proposals.
Much has been publicized about the new Vikings stadium, but very little in regards to the Target Center. When lawmakers approved a new Vikings stadium last year, part of the deal allowed the City of Minneapolis to pay for Target Center renovations. But while stadium plans move forward, Target Center remains quiet. Last year, when lawmakers approved a $975 million Vikings stadium, they also approved $100 million in Target Center renovations.
Only five home games remain on the Vikings schedule this year. And unless the Vikes go to the playoff, that’s how much time is left for the Metrodome. The Dome will be torn down to make way for the Vikings’ new home. And it’s a very tight timeline between now and 2016, when the Vikes move into their new stadium. Michele Kelm-Helgen, the head of the state commission overseeing new stadium construction, says people shouldn’t expect a dramatic, dusty knockdown in Feb. of 2014.
The government panel that’s managing construction of the new Minnesota Vikings stadium made several mistakes related to managing finances in its first few months of operation. That’s the finding of a report released Thursday by Minnesota’s Legislative Auditor.
A price tag of $975 million won’t be enough to cover building the new Vikings stadium the way the team wants it. The team and the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority may have to cut back some desired perks to stay within budget.
Twenty-two financial institutions have applied to help underwrite the $498 million taxpayer share of the new Minnesota Vikings stadium. Minnesota Management and Budget released the list Thursday.
Decode the legalese and the 222-page lease agreement binding the Minnesota Vikings to 30 years or more in their soon-to-be-built stadium shows in great detail who calls the shots, who gets to cash in and who can use the place when the football team isn’t.
The authority that will manage the new Minnesota Vikings stadium has confirmed that some fans wanting a season ticket will have to first pay for a personal seat license.
As some senior level Vikings officials spend time in London, there are questions here at home about the future of the new Vikings stadium. Groundbreaking is scheduled for November, but final negotiations about developments and the stadium lease have been postponed Friday until next week. This is the second time final deals have been delayed. The Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority (MSFA) has now pushed back their final urgent deadlines for negotiations twice. The team says they will be locked into this lease for 30 years so that’s why they are taking their time.
Two critical agreements governing the new Minnesota Vikings stadium remain open to negotiation between the team and the public authority that will run the facility, leading the authority’s board Thursday to delay ratification of the documents.
Minnesota is preparing to sell nearly $500 million in bonds to cover the state’s share of the Vikings stadium facility. It’s looking for financial institutions to buy the bonds for the stadium construction, which is scheduled to start in November. The $498 million in loans will cover the State’s and the Minneapolis’ share of stadium construction. The Vikings are putting up the rest of the $477 million for the project, which will total $975 million.