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Vikings looking to build a ‘magnet’

Are we the only ones who find it ironic that the Minnesota Vikings, who coaxed state taxpayers into building them a new stadium, are now looking to build a “destination development” in Eagan?
It was recently announced that the Vikings have a purchase agreement on 194 acres in Eagan, on which they intend to build a new Winter Park practice facility. It also was announced that the Vikings want to build a “magnet” around that facility, including a 10,000-seat stadium, a hotel, and a conference and event center.
This is the same team’s owners who consistently balked at contributing heavily to the new stadium in downtown Minneapolis, and looked to the state’s taxpayers to finance the bulk of the $1.1 billion stadium. Fortunately, that stadium has not been completed yet, or the Vikings would have stunk it up in their season opener Monday night.
Now, the Vikings are looking not just for a new practice facility, but intend to create an economic development area.
It’s great for Eagan. It will generate employment, property taxes and will be as one Eagan City Council Member put it, “a shining star” in the community.
It’s also great for the Vikings, who will have yet another source of revenue than ticket sales.
We hope it goes well; we truly do.
But what we really hope is that Vikings will pledge a portion of the revenue generated by this “shining star” to pay back the taxpayers of Minnesota for the gem of a stadium they are building in downtown Minneapolis.