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Legislators Stroll Around The Dome

The most recent development on the stadium front comes from Access Vikings.  They report that a group of legislators roamed around the Metrodome (and Mall of America Field) on Monday in an effort to lay their eyes on the thing itself, see the issues first hand, and ask questions.

Also present on the tour were Lester Bagley, the Vikings’ main spokesman, and the Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission sent Executive Director Bill Lester and Chairman Roy Terwilliger. 

Some of the main points that were relayed to the politicians were that the roof on the Metrodome is currently eight years past it’s warranty and expected life, narrow concourses, inadequate restroom facilities for women, the scoreboard is in need of replacement, and so is the turf.  The annual maintenance costs are projected to be $4 to $6 million per year.

The tour started out at Target field, the Twins new stadium.  The point of this, and the entire tour, was to show what the exact differences between old and new stadiums are.  The Vikings have made it clear that they will not extend their lease on the Metrodome which ends in 2011. 

The Commission also made it clear that if the Vikings were to leave town, then the finances of having a climate controlled stadium are unfeasible, and that the Metrodome or any new stadium would be dead in the water as the Vikings presence makes up more than three times the revenue of all other events held at the Dome.

“If the Vikings are gone, the end is very near,” Lester told the legislators.

Renovation of the Dome is thought to be out of the question, as the mechanical plant contains parts from the 70’s and has become outdated.

“At some point, you have to scrap the whole thing and start over,” Terwilliger said.

The politicians on hand thought of the tour as useful, but were not overcome with optimism. 

Meanwhile, a number of grass roots operations are forming and becoming prominent representatives of those who support the Vikings getting a new stadium.  www.savethevikes.org is planning on holding a rally at the State Capitol on December 3rd from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Zygi Wilf recently said this about the stadium issue, “We need to get everybody involved in discussing the solutions to this issue. Just to put it off because it’s not politically correct or whatever political reasons why people might have is not tackling the issue. I feel everyone should be engaged and try to find different answers. At least get to the table and not put it off because it’s not politically popular right now. It’s unfortunate that many don’t want to get engaged in it because it doesn’t serve their political purpose. The Vikings are an important part of the community and as I’ve stated I’m not just owner but the guardian of this team. This team belongs to the fans of Minnesota. We need to get everybody who makes the decisions on the Hill [in St. Paul] and the governor’s office to be more engaged to discuss things more and try to find solutions. To run away from it is not an acceptable answer to us.”

The stadium issue is not going to go away anytime soon, but Vikings Gab will endevour to keep you updated as much as possible.


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7 Responses to “Legislators Stroll Around The Dome”

  1. c.carterhof says:

    There is NO WAY they move!

    Right?
    What could an out of stater do?
    I’ll pitch in what I can.
    If all Viking fans pitch in $100, how much would that be?

  2. Adam Warwas says:

    carter, I’ve long wondered the same thing. After becomming a resident of another state, there is very little I can do to help out… other than keep awareness up with articles like this.

    A funding drive with out-of-state fans is an interesting concept.

  3. bigjohnny84 says:

    Dang it c.c. got ahead of me again, good job c.c. I think at some point Ziggy will have to make a big decision. He may have no choice but move, I pray that doesnt happen. The longer they keep screwin around the higher the chances are they’ll have to leave.

  4. Lost Viking says:

    Andreas Apostolopoulos didn’t expect to actually win when he mailed in a low-ball bid for an abandoned 88,000-seat stadium in suburban Detroit.

    After spotting an auction ad in the back of a newspaper only weeks ago, he decided to bid $583,000 (U.S.) for the Pontiac Silverdome, the former home of football’s Detroit Lion. He put a $250,000 deposit in the mail, with only online documents from the auction house to guide him.

    Then he forgot about it, content to manage his company’s small portfolio of retail and industrial properties. “It was a bit surprising. There were really very few bids.”

    Apostolopoulos’ bid, one of four, values the stadium at about 1 per cent of the $55.7-million it cost to build in 1975.

  5. Lost Viking says:

    Cost to completely refurbish the Dome would be about $ 300 million. Major do-over would include retractable roof, scoreboard, concessions, boxes etc. Final product would be respectable but not to Lucas Oil level.

    Cowboy Stadium or Phoenix equivalent would be in range of $ 1 billion. Superior revenue potential. Wilfs won’t be prepared to share the new revenues as Vikes have done in past.

    Key to long-term deal is development of adjacent lands. Deal is going to be difficult given MSA history.

    • Viking John says:

      How is Mike Lynn going to make his $500,000 a year off the boxes in the dome. That is one screwed up deal. The dome and all the people that have their hand in the revenue.

      Go Vikes

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