Bakk: Vikings stadium bill nearly dead

Vikings stadium rendering
This artist rendering provided by the Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission shows how a new Vikings stadium might be situated on the exiting Metrodome site in downtown Minneapolis.
Courtesy Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission

Supporters are trying to make a final push to get a proposed new stadium bill for the Vikings moving again at the State Capitol.

Supporters have released a statewide poll showing nearly two-to-one support for a Vikings stadium and a three-way financing deal with the state, Minneapolis and the Vikings. But doubts about the plan's viability have brought talks to a standstill.

DFL Senate Minority Leader Tom Bakk, DFL-Cook, said he thinks it may be done for this year.

"Nothing's ever dead, but I'd be awful shocked if somehow some life got breathed into that, and it happened this year," he said. "I was disappointed we weren't able to figure it out."

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It's the second year in a row the stadium has struggled to win approval, despite support from both sides of the political aisle and from Gov. Mark Dayton.

Bakk said that tepid support from the leading option to host the stadium — the City of Minneapolis — is a key factor.

"It got very difficult when you have a city that does not want it," he said. "The city of Minneapolis, the City Council, does not want it. They don't have the votes. So I think unless they have a change of heart, we'll be looking at an alternative location next year."

State officials say any deal they strike will probably require city approval. They've been asking for an indication from the City Council that a deal would be ratified in Minneapolis, but city officials haven't been able to offer a vote, or a formal statement of support from the council.

A deal struck between Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak, Dayton's administration and the Vikings would put a $975 million stadium on the site of the Metrodome.