Field of Schemes
sports stadium news and analysis


This is an archived version of a Field of Schemes article. Comments on this page are closed. To find the current version of the article with updated comments, click here.

March 14, 2011

Timberwolves "solution": Add NBA arena renovations to Vikings stadium plan

There's a new player in the Minnesota Vikings stadium battle, and it's an unexpected one: the Minnesota Timberwolves. According to a document entitled "Global Solution" that was published by Minneapolis Public Radio late Friday, the Wolves owners are proposing a new regional stadium authority that would build a new football stadium for the Vikings, a new minor-league stadium for the St. Paul Saints, and renovate the NBA team's Target Center. Total price tag: a mere $1,173,000,000. And that's without a roof on the Vikings stadium.

Since the Wolves only envision the teams chipping in one-quarter of the resulting $100-million-a-year cost, that leaves $74 million a year to come from what's listed as "Public Funding Source (TBD)." Timberwolves vice president Ted Johnson told MPR that among the taxpayer funding streams being considered are a 0.2% sales tax hike in the metro area, tobacco settlement funds that would otherwise go into the general treasury, revenue from a downtown casino, and a Vikings-themed lottery game. Johnson said the funding details were dropped from the final document because "we got too far ahead of ourselves" and "we didn't feel like everybody had time to line up behind it."

Add it all up, and we have a plan that costs nearly half a billion dollars more than the old plan, that has a warmed-over list of old ideas for ways to pay for it, and that didn't even specifically mention those ideas even in a non-public document because the Wolves don't have any support for them. Now that's headline news.

In other Vikings stadium news, the Associated Press reports that people in Minnesota would love a new Vikings stadium, so long as they're not the ones paying for it. Which, funny enough, is exactly the same way the Vikings owners feel about it.


It's a good plan: if you want a half-billion dollar subsidy, ask for a billion-plus. Then you can talk about how much you're 'giving up' with a slimmed-down, puny little half-billion.

Posted by Dave Boz on March 14, 2011 10:59 AM

Save your money Minny. The Target Center is 21 years old, so they are about 5-7 years away from asking for a new facility anyways (a few years sooner than that if they don't get this reno).

Posted by Dave on March 14, 2011 12:26 PM

Minnesota Sports is a complete and utter embarrassment.

Minnesota Wild?

Vikings? No Valhalla Viking of the past would rside in Cosmos Minneapolis.

Minneapolis----Where real men are from Somalia.

Minnesota Timber Wolves?

Who names these teams--- a 2 year old?

Pllease send the Mythical Vikings to Los Angeles and the Timber Wolves to San Jose.

We are not paying for venues for these dreadful and failed franchises.....

Good Riddance!!!

Posted by Minnesota Resident on March 14, 2011 06:16 PM

Even thought the Wolves put this forward, it's got Wilf all over it. The Vikings want to build in Minneapolis. Minneapolis and Hennepin County don't have the money. The state is broke. What the real idea? If you can't find a local partner to raise taxes to build a stadium, then ask the legislature to create a local partner with the ability to tax local residence.

Posted by john on March 14, 2011 10:40 PM

Why can't the Timberwolves ask the Wild if they can move into Xcel Energy Center?

Posted by Daniel Francis on March 20, 2011 04:12 AM

Latest News Items