Neighborhood residents weigh in on new Vikings stadium design

  • Article by: RICHARD MERYHEW , Star Tribune
  • Updated: May 20, 2013 - 6:05 AM

Neighbors shared mixed reviews on the new Vikings stadium design, but welcomed its neighborhood impact.

From the moment the first images of the new Vikings stadium flashed across the big screen at the Guthrie Theater on Monday, Dean Jacobson liked what he saw.

The pivoting glass doors. The see-through ceiling. The angled roof line that peaks to the west. The ship-like profile and jagged prow against the backdrop of a majestic downtown skyline.

It was more than the 72-year-old Elliot Park resident thought he’d see in the design of a stadium destined to replace the bland and bloated Metrodome.

“It’s just spectacular,” said Jacobson, who can see the Dome’s pillowlike top from his living room window seven blocks away. “I think this one will be here 100 years from now. It’s going to be a classic piece of great architecture for this era.”

In the week that has passed since the first renderings of the nearly billion-dollar stadium were unveiled, second-guessers have pounced and praised. Some think it’s too bulky, too gaudy and too futuristic. Others applaud the bold, glassy look of a design that, from most angles, appears more like a ship than a professional football stadium.

Yet for all the feedback, pro and con, it’s in the neighborhoods closest to the stadium where the design might matter most. It’s there, on the streets of Elliot Park south of the Dome to the Mill District that lines the banks of the Mississippi River, where residents, merchants and workers must live with the massive new NFL venue long after the fourth quarter ends.

Amid last week’s glitz and hype, reviews were mixed.

While Jacobson, a semiretired accountant, saw “a big diamond” on the skyline, Heather Dalzen, manager at the Band Box Diner in Elliot Park, saw something that’s “pretty Space Age.”

David Tinjum, who lives in a condominium near the Guthrie and has a balcony view of the Dome and the new stadium site, said the design evokes images of “icebergs and Vikings ships.” He said he liked what he has seen so far, but wants more details before judging.

At 1.6 million square feet, the new stadium will dominate downtown’s east end and dwarf the eyesore it replaces, weighing in at nearly twice the size and standing 100 feet taller.

Fans will enter at one of four major entrances, with the grand gateway featuring five 95-foot-high pivoting glass doors that face downtown.

The building’s facade will be made up of a mix of glazed glass curtain wall and metal panels that change tone in sunlight. Its roof will be one-half hard decking, with the remainder covered by ETFE, a transparent polymer that was used to cover the outside of the Beijing National Aquatics Center, also known as the “Water Cube,” site of the 2008 Olympic swimming competition.

Millie Schafer, an Elliot Park homeowner for the past 40 years, called it a “beautiful building,” but added that she wonders how “those big glass doors” will hold up over time.

She also questioned the durability of the ETFE, a material that has been used extensively in sports venues in other countries, but not in the U.S.

“I kind of wonder how proven that roof material is,” said Schafer, who has watched the Teflon top of the Metrodome collapse several times over 30 years.

Judy Borger, a Mill District resident who is a member of the city’s stadium implementation committee, which must review and approve the design before it goes to planners and, ultimately, the City Council, wondered at a recent meeting whether fans sitting under the transparent portion of the roof will get too hot from sunlight.

That said, she was pleased that HKS Inc., the project architect, chose a fixed roof over a retractable one, because it allows the team and stadium authority to spend more on other stadium features.

“It’s growing on me,” she said of the design. “As I sit and listen to the logic behind the decisions that were made, they seem reasonable to me.”

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

San Francisco - WP: M. Bumgarner 7 FINAL
Kansas City - LP: J. Shields 1
San Diego 10/23/14 7:25 PM
Denver
Detroit 10/26/14 8:30 AM
Atlanta
Buffalo 10/26/14 12:00 PM
NY Jets
St. Louis 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Kansas City
Houston 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tennessee
Minnesota 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Tampa Bay
Seattle 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Carolina
Baltimore 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Cincinnati
Miami 10/26/14 12:00 PM
Jacksonville
Chicago 10/26/14 12:00 PM
New England
Philadelphia 10/26/14 3:05 PM
Arizona
Oakland 10/26/14 3:25 PM
Cleveland
Indianapolis 10/26/14 3:25 PM
Pittsburgh
Green Bay 10/26/14 7:30 PM
New Orleans
Washington 10/27/14 7:30 PM
Dallas
Houston 85 FINAL
Miami 90
Indiana 89 FINAL
Minnesota 107
Utah 105 FINAL
Oklahoma City 91
Portland 93 FINAL
Denver 75
Phoenix 114 FINAL
LA Lakers 108
LA Clippers 107 FINAL
Golden State 125
San Jose 3 FINAL
Boston 5
NY Rangers 4 FINAL(OT)
New Jersey 3
Toronto 5 FINAL
NY Islanders 2
Detroit 1 FINAL(OT)
Montreal 2
Arizona 3 FINAL(SO)
Nashville 4
Carolina 1 FINAL
Winnipeg 3
Philadelphia 0 FINAL
Chicago 4
Vancouver 3 FINAL
Dallas 6
Florida 4 FINAL(OT)
Colorado 3
Tampa Bay 2 FINAL(OT)
Calgary 1
Arkansas State 40 FINAL
Louisiana 55
Connecticut 10/23/14 6:00 PM
(18) East Carolina
Miami-Florida 10/23/14 7:00 PM
Virginia Tech
So Florida 10/24/14 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Troy 10/24/14 6:30 PM
South Alabama
BYU 10/24/14 8:00 PM
Boise State
(6) Oregon 10/24/14 9:00 PM
California
North Texas 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Rice
UAB 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Arkansas
Rutgers 10/25/14 11:00 AM
(16) Nebraska
Maryland 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Wisconsin
Texas 10/25/14 11:00 AM
(11) Kansas State
Minnesota 10/25/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
Memphis 10/25/14 11:00 AM
SMU
North Carolina 10/25/14 11:30 AM
Virginia
San Jose St 10/25/14 12:00 PM
Navy
Northern Ill 10/25/14 12:00 PM
Eastern Mich
(25) UCLA 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Colorado
Akron 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Ball State
Massachusetts 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Toledo
Ohio U 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Western Mich
Ga Southern 10/25/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Kent State 10/25/14 1:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
Oregon State 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Stanford
Fla Atlantic 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(23) Marshall
Louisiana Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Southern Miss
(1) Miss State 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Kentucky
Georgia Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Pittsburgh
(22) West Virginia 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
Texas Tech 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(10) TCU
Michigan 10/25/14 2:30 PM
(8) Michigan State
Boston College 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Wake Forest
Central Mich 10/25/14 2:30 PM
Buffalo
Vanderbilt 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Missouri
Old Dominion 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Western Ky
UNLV 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Utah State
Temple 10/25/14 4:00 PM
UCF
(15) Arizona 10/25/14 5:00 PM
Washington St
Texas-El Paso 10/25/14 6:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Wyoming 10/25/14 6:00 PM
Colorado State
Syracuse 10/25/14 6:00 PM
(21) Clemson
Texas State 10/25/14 6:00 PM
ULM
(3) Ole Miss 10/25/14 6:15 PM
(24) LSU
(4) Alabama 10/25/14 6:30 PM
Tennessee
So Carolina 10/25/14 6:30 PM
(5) Auburn
(13) Ohio State 10/25/14 7:00 PM
Penn State
(20) USC 10/25/14 9:00 PM
(19) Utah
(14) Arizona State 10/25/14 9:45 PM
Washington
Nevada 10/25/14 10:59 PM
Hawaii
Montreal 10/24/14 5:30 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 10/24/14 8:30 PM
Calgary
Hamilton 10/25/14 3:00 PM
Toronto
Brt Columbia 10/25/14 6:00 PM
Winnipeg

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Are you happy to see the Royals in the World Series?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close