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Architects lay out four plans for Vikes stadium 'Commons'

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'The Commons'
One of the concepts for "The Commons," the new open space near the Vikings stadium in downtown Minneapolis.
Courtesy of Hargreaves Associates

Landscape architects on Wednesday unveiled four potential concepts for the new open space near the Vikings stadium in downtown Minneapolis.

  Each concept takes a slightly different approach to the biggest design challenge facing the project: Portland Avenue, which will run right through the middle of the two-block park being called "The Commons."

  Some of the options downplay that fact, with landscaping that flows from one side to the other. Others treat the street as a dividing line.

  To make any of the concepts happen, boosters need to raise about $20 million. The money will likely come from public and private sources. Council Member Jacob Frey, who represents the area, says he's confident they'll succeed.

  "Putting icing on a cake always costs a little bit of money," he said. "We are right now reaching out to numerous different entities to ensure that this park is not just adequate but is freaking awesome."

  Hargreaves Associates, the landscape design firm, is collecting feedback from the public. It will narrow the options down to a single proposal it plans to unveil it in May.

View the gallery to see the four concepts.