Attorneys representing the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority and the Minnesota Vikings worked into the night Wednesday putting the finishing touches on lease and development agreements for the team's new downtown Minneapolis stadium.
The authority board, which is overseeing construction of the $975 million project, is expected to vote on the agreements at a 5 p.m. meeting Thursday at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome.
The use agreement, which is expected to bind the team to the new stadium for at least the next 30 years, will detail terms of the team's lease with the authority. The development agreement will spell out the responsibilities of each side during construction, as well as outline the parameters for seat license fees -- a one-time fee charged to season ticketholders for the right to reserve a seat.
Approval of the agreements is necessary before the Vikings can firm up their financing for the project. The team is responsible for $477 million of the $975 million construction cost. The state of Minnesota and city of Minneapolis are picking up the rest.
The Vikings have said that they hope to have their financing in place by early November, in time for a ceremonial groundbreaking east of the Metrodome.
The new stadium, which will replace the Metrodome, is tentatively scheduled to open by the 2016 NFL season.