Minneapolis makes play for a new Vikings stadium

The latest vision for a Vikings stadium in Minneapolis.
The latest vision for a Vikings stadium in Minneapolis.

After a week in which the momentum for building a new Vikings stadium seemed to shift from Minneapolis to Ramsey County, the city is set to unveil a proposal today to keep the team west of the Mississippi.

The details are sketchy, but it sounds like Mayor R.T. Rybak and City Council President Barb Johnson are pushing a plan to build the new stadium on the Metrodome site that would have the city pony up about a quarter of the stadium's projected $900 million cost.

More will be revealed at a press conference this afternoon, but for now it sounds like money for the project will come through some combination of revenue from the convention center and sales taxes. Property tax revenue won't be used as a source, and the money raised will also help fund renovations at the Target Center.

Barring some 11th-hour surprise, the news means we're down to a bidding war between the Metrodome site, which is now the only viable option in Minneapolis, and the old armory site in Arden Hills.

Minneapolis makes play for a new Vikings stadium

And the stadium bill before the Legislature calls for a three-way split on construction costs between the state, the team, and the "local partner," which now effectively means Ramsey County or Minneapolis.

Will the team opt to remain in a location that already meshes with the booming entertainment and growing transit infrastructure of the city, or will the owners opt to build a brand spanking new campus on the outskirts of St. Paul?

In the end, it will depend on which community most sweetens the deal, where the Wilf brothers think they can get the best return on their investment, and whether any deal can make it past a Legislature so mired in acrimony that it still hasn't passed a state budget.

Lawmakers go home on May 23.

Previously: Can you say, "St. Paul Vikings?"

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