By ROCHELLE OLSON

Ramsey County’s Minnesota Vikings stadium plan increased by $75 million the state and county contributions to the proposed fixed-roof facility in Arden Hills.

The overall cost of the stadium would also increase from $1.05 billion, to $1.11 billion, mainly because the proposal now incorporates the upgrades to surrounding roadways. The proposal incorporates $101 million in new road improvements.

The county would now contribute $375 million and the state would pay $350 million. Ramsey County would issue bonds and pay them off through increased food, beverage and on-sale liquor taxes. The origins of the state contribution remain undetermined.

The county submitted and updated development agreement, reached overnight, with the Vikings that holds the team’s contribute at $425 million.

The 148-page report also lays out arguments for why the former munitions site offers the best development opportunity. For example, the stadium would be built on 230 acres, but the surrounding 170 acres would be available for team owner Zygi Wilf to develop.

County Finance Director Lee Mehrkens said the estimated value of the developed land surrounding the stadium would be $232 million. That would generate $6.6 million annually in local property taxes as well as $3 million annually in state property taxes that could be used to finance debt on the stadium.

The deal would set up a public entity, the stadium authority, to oversee operations by the Vikings, who would contract with a third-party operator to run the facility.

The county and Mehrkens say the proposal is the most thorough because it would build a stadium, cleanup a SuperFund site, add jobs and increase the tax base.

The stadium would have 21,000 parking spaces and 65,000 seats with the possibility to expand to 72,000.

The team would sign a 30-year lease and be responsible for cost overruns in the construction of the stadium and surrounded infrastructure.
 

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