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Continued: $17M deal to buy plaza takes heat off Vikings stadium talks

For now, it appears as though the authority will not be negotiating to buy land north of the stadium owned by entities associated with the Wilf family, the Vikings’ owner.

Early land-acquisition plans called for the now-vacant property to be used for a parking ramp, but now that doesn’t appear to be in the mix. “Hopefully there will be enough cost savings that we could add it back in,” Bagley said.

Second property sought

The second property sought by the authority is a single block owned by the Star Tribune that will be used for a parking ramp.

That block is part of a parking contract awarded by the authority in July to Minneapolis developer Ryan Cos., which is planning a $400 million mixed-use development west of the stadium.

The ramp, which would be used by local residents, office workers and stadium users, would be owned by the authority in a deal that is expected to close by year’s end.

The authority’s agreement Thursday also means that gameday festivities on the Downtown East plaza will continue for the remaining four Vikings home games and any playoff games. The 2003 agreement that permitted such activities was set to expire on Oct. 31.

‘All parties are pleased’

Authority spokeswoman Jennifer Hathaway said the two sides were in mediation Wednesday and came to an agreement over the value of the plaza land, which is bordered by Park Avenue S. and Kirby Puckett Place between 4th and 5th Streets.

She said a purchase agreement should be consummated in “about a week.”

Jon Austin, spokesman for Minneapolis Venture, said, “All parties are pleased with the agreement.” The Hennepin County lawsuit has been put on hold until a final agreement is reached.

Minneapolis Venture, which includes developers Robert Lux and Phillip Jaffe and financier Irv Kessler, bought the plaza from the city of Minneapolis in 2007, part of a $65 million package that included five parking ramps.

 

Janet Moore • 612-673-7752

Richard Meryhew • 612-673-4425

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