The Minnesota Vikings are working on plans to fund roadwork needed to accommodate traffic around a new stadium in Arden Hills.
Team Vice President Lester Bagley met with legislative sponsors of a stadium bill Thursday to talk about the plan. Road construction costs of $131 million have been a major stumbling block to the proposal.
Bagley said the plan would depend in part on grant funding from the Metropolitan Council's Transportation Advisory Board. He said the team would ask Ramsey County to bond for the rest, with the intention of paying off the bonds with user fees.
"Maybe a surcharge on parking or a surcharge on concessions, or things like that, but they'll be modest and minimal, but cobbled together," Bagley said. "You can come up with $4 million to $6 million a year you would need to cover these bonds over 30 years to pay for those roads."
Republican State Sen. Julie Rosen, R-Fairmont, one of the bill's sponsors, said that she, Rep. Morrie Lanning,R-Moorhead, and Gov. Mark Dayton are planning to send a letter to the team and host Ramsey County with a so-called "drop-dead date" to close the funding gap in their stadium plan.
The Vikings' Lester Bagley said the team will meet that deadline, and adjust the deal to make it acceptable to lawmakers. He said every time the team has been asked for something, they've delivered.
"We've brought forward a transportation finance package. They've asked us to bring forward language on cutting the state into the partnership, to make sure the state's interests are protected, and we're working on that, and we've presented that language to the bill authors," he said.
Bagley said he thinks they're moving forward, and that when the legislature is ready to consider a stadium he's confident the team will have a proposal in front of them.