Sections

Weather Forecast

Close
Advertisement
A street sign lies on the side of the road inside the Twin Cities Army Ammunition Plant in Arden Hills.
A street sign lies on the side of the road inside the Twin Cities Army Ammunition Plant in Arden Hills.

Update: Vikings want Arden Hills retractable-roof stadium (video)

Email Sign up for Breaking News Alerts

news Willmar, 56201

Willmar Minnesota 2208 Trott Ave. SW / P.O. Box 839 56201

Update 5:30 p.m.

ARDEN HILLS, Minn. -- The Minnesota Vikings picked a northwest Ramsey County location for a new football stadium costing just north of $1 billion.

Advertisement
Advertisement

The team and Ramsey County would pay $739 million for the Arden Hills stadium, leaving the state to fund less than $300 million, which is the limit many legislators and Gov. Mark Dayton put on state contributions.

The stadium itself, which would include a retractable roof, would cost $884 million. Infrastructure improvements, such as roads, would cost another $173 million, Ramsey County and Vikings officials said.

The team committed $407 million, 44% of the stadium and 39% of the overall cost to the 2,400-acre site.

"Reaching an agreement with Ramsey County as our local partner is a major milestone in our efforts to finalize a long-term stadium solution, and we are pleased to have found such a strong and forthright partner," team owner Zygi Wilf said.

Wilf said the Arden Hills site would give fans an all-day experience on game days.

"We are going to bring back ... the old traditions of tailgating and a full-day experience," Wilf said. "This is what our fans want."

Calling it an exciting day, Wilf said that preparing for today's announcement has "been a hard work over the last couple of months."

Bud Grant: "Fate has saved this for the Vikings

Ramsey County and the Vikings announced the deal this afternoon making Ramsey County the long-sought third spoke in a funding partnership along with the state and team. Ramsey County officials and Vikings owners Zygi and Mark Wilf were flanked by former Vikings head coach Bud Grant, retired star Jim Marshall and current coach Leslie Frazier.

The announcement came a day after Minneapolis presented an offer for a nearly $1 billion stadium. The Vikings said were not involved in creating that plan and had issues with the funding breakdown.

Legislative approval is needed before a stadium can be built, in a large part because the state would borrow money to help finance stadium construction, to be repaid by new sports-related taxes and other fees.

Gov. Mark Dayton Tuesday announced that up to $240 million would be needed to improve roads and other infrastructure around Ramsey County's Arden Hills site if a stadium is built there.

Since Dayton has put a $300 million state funding limit on a stadium, the Arden Hills site would have little other money available from tax increases and other state funds.

While Dayton pointed out the high road costs, he remained open to the Ramsey County site.

"I will support either project up to $300 million state participation," Dayton told reporters.

The biggest question, now that the Vikings have picked a site, is whether the Legislature can approve a stadium before it adjourns May 23.

"I think it is very possible and very doable," Dayton said. "I also think it is possible that it won't."

Just prior to the announcement in Ramsey County, the Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission released a document comparing the costs of the two competing sites. The Ramsey County site would be more expensive to develop on due largely to the need for highway improvements and the development of the infrastructure.

Minneapolis officials pitched as part of its proposal the ability to reuse much of the Metrodome site in building a new facility downtown.

Legislative leaders have said they want to emphasize fixing the state's budget problem, which is not close to completion.

Dayton has said he would consider signing a Vikings bill before the budget is resolved. However, no legislative committees have heard stadium bills introduced by Rep. Morrie Lanning, R-Moorhead, and Sen. Julie Rosen, R-Fairmont.

Andrew Tellijohn is a Twin Cities freelance writer. Don Davis reports for Forum Communications Co.

Vikings pick Arden Hills for stadium site

Update 1 p.m.

ST. PAUL -- The Minnesota Vikings married Ramsey County this afternoon and plan their honeymoon on a former ammunition-making site.

The Vikings and county officials called an afternoon news conference to make the announcement about where they hope to build a new professional football stadium.

Team Owners Zygi Wilf and Mark Wilf and Ramsey County officials were to be joined by former Coach Bud Grant, current Coach Leslie Frazier and legendary player Jim Marshall.

The announcement comes a day after Minneapolis presented an offer for a nearly $1 billion stadium. The Vikings said they did not like that plan.

Legislative approval is needed before a stadium can be built, in a large part because the state would borrow money to help finance stadium construction, to be repaid by new sports-related taxes and other fees.

Gov. Mark Dayton today announced that up to $240 million would be needed to improve roads and other infrastructure around Ramsey County's Arden Hills site if a stadium is built there.

Since Dayton has put a $300 million state funding limit on a stadium, the Arden Hills site would have little other money available from tax increases and other state funds.

While Dayton pointed out the high road costs, he remained open to the Ramsey County site.

"I will support either project up to $300 million state participation," Dayton told reporters.

The biggest question, now that the Vikings have picked a site, is whether the Legislature can approve a stadium before it adjourns May 23.

"I think it is very possible and very doable," Dayton said. "I also think it is possible that it won't."

Legislative leaders have said they want to emphasize fixing the state's budget problem, which is not close.

No legislative committees have heard stadium bills introduced by Rep. Morrie Lanning, R-Moorhead, and Sen. Julie Rosen, R-Fairmont.

Don Davis reports for Forum Communications Co.

Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement