Hartman: Dayton still expects stadium to be built

  • Article by: SID HARTMAN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: August 25, 2013 - 11:09 PM

The governor doesn’t think the Wilfs’ recent troubles will prevent the project from being completed on time.

hide

A sketch of the new Vikings stadium.

Photo: ., HKS Sports and Entertainment Group

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

Speaking about the status of the new Vikings football stadium and the legal issues that the Wilf family, owners of the Vikings, are dealing with in New Jersey, Governor Mark Dayton said that the legal problems should not keep the stadium from being built.

“I think that is extremely unlikely,” Dayton said. “Anything is possible, but I think we’ll have a stadium built.”

The governor also said he hasn’t talked to the Wilfs about the problem that has developed over the past few weeks.

“It depends on what the facts show, but I hope it shows it was an unusual situation and not [their] usual way of doing business, but the facts will speak for themselves,” Dayton said.

Also when talking about the problem facing the Wilfs at present Dayton said that the NFL is taking a neutral position right now.

“They obviously are supportive of the Wilfs, as they are of the other owners, but I think it’s a case now where the investigative auditors need to go in and make sure that the people of Minnesota got a square deal,” he said. “And the representations were accurate and honest, and we have a basis for going ahead together. They own the Vikings, so we don’t have a choice of who we’re dealing with in this situation.”

There is some concern that the legal problem facing the Wilfs could delay the start of construction and thereby alter the date the stadium would be ready. The stadium is currently set to open in 2015.

“It could [alter that] and I’m not going to borrow trouble, as [the Vikings] said September 15 is the drop dead date for keeping it on time, and that probably has a little slack to it,” Dayton said. “But there’s no question this has to get resolved quickly.”

Dayton said he has talked to a couple of judges here who said they’ve never heard one making the kind of comments that Federal Judge Deanne Wilson made about the conduct of the Wilfs, using phrases such as “civil fraud,” “racketeering” and “evil motives.”

“I mean, that’s concerning,” said the governor. “And we need to do our due diligence and make sure we’re going to be protected. But as I said, on the other hand they own the Minnesota Vikings. We have to deal with them. There is no one else to deal with.”

Still the governor said that he’s remaining optimistic that the legal troubles in New Jersey won’t affect the building of the Vikings stadium.

“We’ll get the stadium built,” he said. “I can’t have you mad at me for the next year and a half. As I said, I think it would be extremely unlikely that it’s not [built]. But I’ve learned in this line of work to never rule anything out.”

Excited about plaza

Dayton is excited about the proposal that Ryan Companies has made to develop a gigantic section on the east side of downtown.

“I think if all of the city, county and everyone else in the bureaucracy can get out of the way and let them do this project it will be incredible,” he said. “The Metrodome was criticized because nothing ever happened around it. This stadium hasn’t even begun and they already have a $400 million project with 5,000 jobs in there and people living and the beautiful parkway.

“So this stadium is going to anchor that eastern part of Minneapolis — which is pretty dilapidated now. This is going to show why the stadium, in addition to keeping the Vikings in Minnesota, is worth everyone’s support, because it’s about jobs in Minnesota. And that’s just the first; that will trigger other projects. It will be a total transformation of that area.”

Does Dayton believe that the Vikings could be moved if the stadium deal were to blow up because of the Wilfs’ legal issues?

“If the Vikings move I’ll probably have to move to Bolivia or Argentina or something. I certainly want them to succeed, I want them to stay in Minnesota and have a great season. I want to see a Super Bowl victory before I pass on. I lived through those four agonizing Super Bowl experiences. I want one more crack at it.”

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

Baltimore - LP: K. Gausman 1 FINAL
Chicago Cubs - WP: J. Arrieta 4
Houston 1 Bottom 7th Inning
Cleveland 1
San Francisco 4 Bottom 6th Inning
Washington 2
St. Louis 4 Bottom 6th Inning
Philadelphia 5
Chicago WSox 3 Top 6th Inning
NY Yankees 3
Tampa Bay 7 Top 7th Inning
Toronto 0
Atlanta 1 Bottom 6th Inning
Cincinnati 0
Seattle 0 Top 6th Inning
Boston 0
Kansas City 3 Bottom 3rd Inning
Texas 1
Pittsburgh 3 Top 3rd Inning
Milwaukee 2
Detroit 1 Top 3rd Inning
Minnesota 6
Miami 0 Top 2nd Inning
Colorado 0
San Diego - O. Despaigne 8:40 PM
Arizona - J. Collmenter
LA Angels - H. Santiago 9:05 PM
Oakland - S. Gray
NY Mets - J. Niese 9:10 PM
Los Angeles - D. Haren
Carolina 0 3rd Qtr
New England 13
NY Giants 0 2nd Qtr 0:38
NY Jets 10
Jacksonville 6 3rd Qtr
Detroit 7
Oakland 7 2nd Qtr 11:50
Green Bay 14
Chicago 9:00 PM
Seattle
Tampa Bay 8/23/14 3:30 PM
Buffalo
Tennessee 8/23/14 6:00 PM
Atlanta
Dallas 8/23/14 6:00 PM
Miami
Washington 8/23/14 6:30 PM
Baltimore
New Orleans 8/23/14 7:00 PM
Indianapolis
Minnesota 8/23/14 7:00 PM
Kansas City
St. Louis 8/23/14 7:00 PM
Cleveland
Houston 8/23/14 8:00 PM
Denver
San Diego 8/24/14 3:00 PM
San Francisco
Cincinnati 8/24/14 7:00 PM
Arizona
Atlanta 8/28/14 5:00 PM
Jacksonville
Detroit 8/28/14 6:00 PM
Buffalo
Indianapolis 8/28/14 6:00 PM
Cincinnati
Kansas City 8/28/14 6:00 PM
Green Bay
NY Jets 8/28/14 6:00 PM
Philadelphia
St. Louis 8/28/14 6:00 PM
Miami
Carolina 8/28/14 6:30 PM
Pittsburgh
New England 8/28/14 6:30 PM
NY Giants
Washington 8/28/14 6:30 PM
Tampa Bay
Baltimore 8/28/14 7:00 PM
New Orleans
Chicago 8/28/14 7:00 PM
Cleveland
Denver 8/28/14 7:00 PM
Dallas
Minnesota 8/28/14 7:00 PM
Tennessee
San Francisco 8/28/14 7:00 PM
Houston
Arizona 8/28/14 9:00 PM
San Diego
Seattle 8/28/14 9:00 PM
Oakland
(21) Texas A&M 8/28/14 5:00 PM
(9) So Carolina
Wake Forest 8/28/14 6:00 PM
ULM
Boise State 8/28/14 7:00 PM
(18) Ole Miss
Tulane 8/28/14 7:00 PM
Tulsa
Temple 8/28/14 8:15 PM
Vanderbilt
Rutgers 8/28/14 9:00 PM
Washington St
Weber State 8/28/14 9:30 PM
(19) Arizona State
BYU 8/29/14 6:00 PM
Connecticut
(6) Jacksonville St 8/29/14 6:30 PM
(8) Michigan State
Bowling Green 8/29/14 6:30 PM
Western Ky
TX-San Antonio 8/29/14 8:00 PM
Houston
Colorado State 8/29/14 8:00 PM
Colorado
UNLV 8/29/14 9:30 PM
Arizona
UCF 8/30/14 7:30 AM
Penn State
Real Salt Lake 8:00 PM
FC Dallas
Montreal 0 1:42
Winnipeg 1
Toronto 8/23/14 3:00 PM
Edmonton
Calgary 8/24/14 2:00 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 8/24/14 6:00 PM
Brt Columbia
Ottawa 8/29/14 6:30 PM
Montreal
Winnipeg 8/31/14 2:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Toronto 9/1/14 12:00 PM
Hamilton
Edmonton 9/1/14 3:30 PM
Calgary
Chicago 55 3rd Qtr 1:05
Atlanta 58
Los Angeles 9:00 PM
Phoenix

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How closely will you follow the Lynx in the WNBA playoffs?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

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

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close