The park outside the Vikings Stadium — aka the US Bank Stadium by the Buildings that Say Wells Fargo — doesn’t have enough money for some of the planned attractions. By some peculiar turn of events the portion of the public space that does not directly involve football or banking is underfunded. So it’s up to us: Rather than find a sponsor who will part with a sheaf of shekels in exchange for slapping their brand on the attraction, let us all contribute a dollar to fund an individual blade of grass. Tell us that the atomic structure of the blade will be engraved with our name, viewable if we bring an electron microscope to the park. Here’s half a sawbuck: I’m good for five blades. Just don’t build a pigskin palace and then pawn off a field of thistles as a “natural” park.
And don’t even think of spray-painting the dandelions purple and calling them Bud Grant Blossoms.
The Nicollet Mall reconstruction is also in the news for insufficient funds. The bid came in a mere $24 million more than expected, because the design calls for a certain kind of pavers. You may wonder: what, Italian patio bricks imported from Menardo in Milan?
No, it just requires a certain expertise to put them in. They could be replaced with “stained concrete,” although it would seem that any concrete you use for a sidewalk is eventually “stained concrete.” Either those black spots are trodden gum or people are expectorating squid ink.
Again, we the people can help here. The city could divide the Mall into thousands of tiny plots, and sell sponsorships. Of course, you’d be on the hook if anyone slipped and hurt their back, but such a fall would involve many small plots, so the liability would be spread out.
If you can prove you went downtown and put ice-melt and sand on your inch-square plot, you might get off the hook.