The Kraus-Anderson Construction company out of Minneapolis will build the proposed Vikings headquarters complex in Eagan, and the cost of the project is speculated be $80 million to $90 million. The word is that Mortenson Construction, which built U.S. Bank Stadium, didn’t bid on the project due to its workload.
Kraus-Anderson will begin excavation on the indoor practice facility and the Vikings offices on the former site of the Northwest Airlines headquarters.
Crawford Architects out of Kansas City, Mo., is designing the complex. The indoor facility will compose 45 of the 200 acres and there will be four other outdoor practice fields in addition to the indoor practice field.
The project will also include an outdoor stadium where the Vikings hope to entice a feature Friday night high school football game, as was the case many years ago at Parade Stadium in Bloomington. It also could be used for some college football, and lacrosse and soccer matches.
The Vikings believe the outdoor stadium will have 6,000 seats with the ability to grow to 10,000.
Meanwhile, the indoor facility and team headquarters will feature a state-of-the-art training facility, locker room, nutrition area, meeting space, weight room and football facilities. It will also include a broadcast studio for the Vikings Entertainment Network.
Additional phases will include the construction of office space, a major medical office, a conference center hotel and other retail and residential development.
Those additional phases will be dependent upon the marketplace and could take anywhere from 10 to 15 years to develop. Still if all goes according to plan and those developments happen it could constitute about 3 million square feet and cost around $400 million to $500 million.
There will be no problem punting in the indoor stadium, which could be the most outstanding one in the NFL, maybe even better than the Dallas Cowboys facility that is getting a lot of rave reviews.
The proposed completion date for the project is March 2018.
On another subject, the Vikings have sold all but two of 131 suites at U.S. Bank Stadium, which will have its grand opening in July.
Obama praises Flip
It was a touching moment when President Obama played host to the Minnesota Lynx for the third time as WNBA champions on Monday, when he paid tribute to the late Flip Saunders.
As it appeared in USA Today, Obama said, “I want to take a moment to recognize somebody who I know would have loved to have been in this moment — Flip Saunders — who was a huge part of Minnesota basketball at all levels and a supporter of this team.
“Obviously, he experienced a tragic illness. And so on behalf of all basketball fans, this day, too, is ‘For Flip.’ And we want to give him a big round of applause.”
Obama, who is a big basketball fan, clearly appreciated all the work Saunders did for basketball in this community before he passed away last October at age 60.
Speaking of Saunders, the word around the Wolves is that his son Ryan likely will be retained on the coaching staff this season.
Germans get a shot
It’s noteworthy that we have two German rookies playing for local teams with outfielder Max Kepler on the Twins and wide receiver Moritz Boehringer being drafted by the Vikings.
Kepler has been hitting really well of late, entering Wednesday with a nine-game hitting streak where he hit .375 with a home run, six RBI and eight runs scored. And over his previous 17 games he had hit .295 with three home runs, six doubles, 11 RBI and 11 runs.
Meanwhile, Boehringer has faced a lot of new material as he tries to transition to the NFL.
Vikings receiving coach George Stewart told Fox Sports North earlier this month: “You want to start at the grass roots and work your way up, and we’ve been doing that with him. He’s extremely intelligent, so he catches onto things pretty well. He understands exactly what I’m trying to communicate to him. He has a great understanding of the language.”
• The Big Ten has now signed six-year TV deals that call for $2.64 billion over six years, with every team in the conference sharing the profits, and the Gophers naturally getting their share. Fox Sports’ deal is worth $240 million, ESPN is worth $190 million, CBS $10 million, plus figures not available for the Big Ten Network and the bowl game revenue.
• Timberwolves coach Tom Thibodeau denied the recent reports that the team had already hired Raptors assistant coach Andy Greer, who worked with Thibodeau previously. Thibodeau did say that the team is getting ready to make some hires though. “There’s a number of people we’re talking to and most of them were under contract. You have to be patient and work your way through that and we have people here. So we have some staff members already in place.”
• Saturday night, ESPN ran a feature on Wolves first-round draft pick Kris Dunn that made your heart ache. I can’t recall any young pro athlete who has had a tougher upbringing than he had without a mother for most of his life and his father for part of his life.
• The Gophers athletic department has come up with a football ticket plan to try and increase sales before the season. They are running a promotion starting at $45 where you can pick one game out of Colorado State, Iowa and Rutgers, and then also have to pick a game out of a second group of tickets for Oregon State, Indiana State, Purdue or Northwestern. The cheapest tickets for each game are as follows: $85 for Iowa; $40 for Rutgers; $30 for Oregon State, Purdue and Northwestern; $25 for Colorado State; and $20 for Indiana State. The highest-priced tickets range from $250 for Iowa to $99 for Indiana State for outdoor club seats, Oregon State, Purdue and Northwestern are all at $150 for that level of seating.
• Former Twins outfielder Oswaldo Arcia, who was traded to Tampa Bay for either $45,000 or a player to be named later, is 7-for-16 with two doubles, a home run, four RBI and three runs scored in five games with the Rays since the trade.
• The Gophers announced that eight runners are being inducted into the 2016 Roy Griak Invitational Hall of Fame: Missy (Buttrey) Rock, Katie Flood, Bill Miles, Jo Rider, Tyler Sigl, Martin Smith, Kim Smith and Matt Tegenkamp.
Sid Hartman can be heard weekdays on 830-AM at 6:40, 7:40 and 8:40 a.m. and on Sundays at 9:30 a.m. firstname.lastname@example.org