The battle to find a resolution to the stadium situation in Minnesota has been a long, hard battle for nearly a decade, but one of the best days of that battle came earlier this week when Ramsey County announced they have reached an agreement with the Vikings to be the team’s local partner. A big press conference was conducted to make the announcement and the entire development provided some optimism for Vikings fans in Minnesota.
We won’t put the cart before the horse here and assume the Minnesota Legislature will pass the proposal into law and finalize the plan, but at least now a huge step in the process has been completed and discussions can continue to move this issue forward.
In my view, there are a lot of things to like about this proposal. I won’t go over all of the details in this blog entry- you can find most of them by clicking here - but I did want to explain a few of the underrated aspects of this deal that I particularly appreciate.
– We all know that creating jobs is a good thing and we also know that building a new stadium will create jobs. But the great thing about the jobs a stadium would create is that many of the jobs will be in construction/trade. I’ve heard State leaders describe the current job climate in that industry as a “crisis.” Well, this proposal will support 13,000 full- and part-time jobs, including 7,500 construction jobs. Also, Mortenson Construction says $300 million of the overall project costs are wages for construction workers.
– The stadium in this proposal is a multi-use facility that will give the State one more first-class venue and will also give the State a legitimate venue to host events such as the Super Bowl and the NCAA Final 4. In addition, the Wilf Ownership group has expressed interest in bringing Major League Soccer (MLS) back to Minnesota if this stadium proposal is passed.
– Going back to the MLS idea, this stadium proposal would add an MLS venue to an area that neighbors the National Sports Center in Blaine, the world’s largest Amateur Sports and Meeting Facility. I’m not an avid soccer lover, but I know there are a lot of Minnesotans who are and I also know there’s nothing wrong with improving and enhancing facilities that encourage amateur and youth sports participation.
– The Vikings are paying for 44% of the stadium costs and 39% of the total costs of the project, numbers that are higher than previous proposals and numbers that illustrate the Wilfs’ commitment to reaching a stadium resolution in Minnesota.
– Did you know that, according to our market research and surveys, just short of half of the State’s population follows the Vikings each Sunday? The team’s 69 share means that 69% of the TVs that are turned on each Sunday during the season are tuned into Vikings games. This tells us that the Vikings are an important part of the quality of life in Minnesota and the perception of the State around the county. Without a new stadium, the risk remains that the Vikings will no longer reside in Minnesota.
So what do you all think of the Arden Hills/Ramsey County stadium proposal? Let us know by leaving a comment in the comments section below this entry.
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