Vikings stadium design OK'd by Minneapolis Planning Commission

  • Article by: RICHARD MERYHEW , Star Tribune
  • Updated: August 12, 2013 - 10:00 PM

Despite some sharp criticism from one of its members, a Minneapolis commission approved the plan.

hide

This handout rendering shows the glassy design for the new Vikings stadium.

 

Development of the $975 million new home for the Minnesota Vikings moved ever so slightly closer to reality Monday when the Minneapolis Planning Commission signed off on the stadium’s bold and glassy design.

The approval, after nearly an hour of discussion, came after a 25-member Stadium Implementation Committee — made up of neighborhood residents, businesses and local political leaders — OK’d the design at its final meeting in July.

The design plan will be forwarded to the city’s zoning and planning committee next week before going to the full City Council for a vote Aug. 30.

“It’s an important step,” said Michele Kelm-Helgen, chairwoman of the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority (MSFA), the public body overseeing the project.

Groundbreaking for the stadium, which will replace the Metrodome, is tentatively set for October.

Before that can happen, however, the team and the MSFA also must sign off on final lease and development agreements. Votes on both are expected at the authority’s Aug. 23 meeting and before the state issues taxpayer-backed bonds to pay its share.

Several planning commissioners asked Monday that Kelm-Helgen return at a later date with landscape and parking designs related to the $400 million, mixed-use Ryan Cos. development near the stadium.

The authority is still negotiating with Ryan on the parking and skyway portion of the project, which will connect to the stadium. Final design documents are not yet complete.

Six of eight commissioners present for the vote at Monday’s meeting approved the plan; one — mayoral candidate Dan Cohen — opposed it, while another member — Liz Wielinski — abstained.

Cohen criticized the fast-track nature of the project, which won legislative financial approval in May 2012 after years of lobbying and politicking. The Vikings hope to open the new venue in time for the 2016 NFL season, but have less than three years from groundbreaking to meet that goal.

“The financial arrangements for this are a total mess,” Cohen said, referring to the failures of the state’s original plan to fund its $348 million portion of construction with tax revenues from electronic pulltabs and bingo games.

Cohen also cited concerns about the business practices of the team owner, Zygi Wilf, and his family.

He was referring to comments last week by a New Jersey judge, who said that Wilf and his family’s real estate business had committed fraud and breach of contract and had violated that state’s civil racketeering statute in a two-decade-old real estate deal.

Several days later, Gov. Mark Dayton weighed in, questioning the Wilfs’ business ethics and urging the stadium authority to carefully review the stadium deal to ensure that the team and its owners’ commitment to the project are “truthful and accurate.”

“I don’t care to participate as a city official in furthering this thing along,” Cohen said.

 

Richard Meryhew • 612-673-4425

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Seattle
Minnesota 94 FINAL
Philadelphia 103
Houston 93 FINAL
Boston 87
Portland 99 FINAL
Atlanta 105
Sacramento 90 FINAL
Cleveland 101
Toronto 127 FINAL
Brooklyn 122
Dallas 93 FINAL
Miami 72
LA Clippers 103 FINAL
New Orleans 108
Golden State 100 FINAL
Utah 110
Chicago 93 FINAL
Phoenix 99
Pittsburgh 2 FINAL(OT)
New Jersey 1
St. Louis 3 FINAL(SO)
Carolina 2
Nashville 0 FINAL
Colorado 3
Buffalo 2 FINAL
Vancouver 5
Chicago 4 FINAL
Anaheim 1
Harvard 75 FINAL
Princeton 72
Quinnipiac 57 FINAL
Canisius 63
Brown 49 FINAL
Cornell 57
Siena 79 FINAL
Manhattan 87
Marist 65 FINAL
Niagara 61
Dartmouth 51 FINAL
Penn 58
Oregon 68 FINAL
Arizona State 67
Yale 63 FINAL
Columbia 59
Monmouth 60 FINAL
Fairfield 59
IUPUI 59 FINAL
Western Ill 63
Oregon State 34 FINAL
Arizona 57
Kent State 55 FINAL
Buffalo 80
Canisius 75 FINAL
Monmouth 58
Butler 67 FINAL
Providence 59
Cornell 65 FINAL
Brown 52
Columbia 47 FINAL
Yale 55
Coll of Charleston 47 FINAL
Drexel 64
Penn 55 FINAL
Dartmouth 39
Elon 60 FINAL
James Madison 89
(19) Princeton 96 FINAL
Harvard 46
(9) Florida State 82 FINAL
Georgia Tech 62
Quinnipiac 87 FINAL
Siena 62
Richmond 54 FINAL
Rhode Island 50
Loyola-Chicago 58 FINAL
Southern Ill 64
Georgetown 52 FINAL
DePaul 93
Villanova 75 FINAL
Marquette 59
Wichita State 70 FINAL
Northern Iowa 51
Xavier 65 FINAL
Creighton 74
Bradley 58 FINAL
Illinois State 55
Missouri State 89 FINAL
Drake 94
Arizona 48 FINAL
Utah 62
(11) Arizona State 68 FINAL
Colorado 60
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Date/Opponent Time W L Score
2014 preseason     
Aug 8 - vs. Oakland 7 pmX10-6
Aug 16 - vs. Arizona 7:30 pmX30-28
Aug 23 - at Kansas City 7 pmX30-12
Aug 28 - at Tennessee 7 pmX19-3
2014 regular season     
Sep 7 - at St. Louis NoonX34-6
Sep 14 - vs. New England NoonX30-7
Sep 21 - at New Orleans NoonX20-9
Sep 28 - vs. Atlanta 3:25 pmX41-28
Oct 2 - at Green Bay 7:25 pmX42-10
Oct 12 - vs. Detroit NoonX17-3
Oct 19 - at. Buffalo NoonX17-16
Oct 26 - at Tampa Bay NoonX19-13 ot
Nov 2 - vs. Washington NoonX29-26
Nov 9 - Bye
Nov 16 - at Chicago NoonX21-13
Nov. 23 - vs. Green Bay NoonX24-21
Nov. 30 - vs. Carolina NoonX31-13
Dec 7 - vs. NY Jets NoonX30-24 ot
Dec 14 - at Detroit 3:25 pmX16-14
Dec 21 - at Miami NoonX37-35
Dec 28 - vs. Chicago NoonX13-9

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: Who will win the Super Bowl?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close