Vikings stadium contribution increases again

The Vikings’ contribution to the new stadium is at $552 million and apparently still counting. Smaller Norseman suites are being planned with the latest money.

Nobody can accuse the Vikings of not paying their fair share for the new stadium that is being constructed. It seems like a month doesn’t go by that the Vikings don’t increase their contribution to the new stadium.

This time the Vikings announced that they’re kicking in another $1.2 million for the construction of 15 “Norseman suites” – a smaller version of the standard luxury boxes. According to response from the fans, there has been an interest in the smaller suites. The typical suite has an occupancy of 18 to 32 people. The Norseman suites would accommodate 10 people and are more popular for businesses to use as perks rather than buying out an entire expanded suite.

The cost will include approximately $150,000 in design fees and the remaining amount being used to construct the suites themselves.

Last month, the Vikings kicked in $19.5 million for plaza enhancements, food service equipment, enhanced game day entertainment facilities on the plaza and retractable seating upgrades.

The latest contribution to the project brings the Vikings’ total contribution to $552 million – $75.2 million more than was agreed upon when the Minnesota State Legislature approved the stadium bill. No additional state or local money has been added to the project. When it was first approved, the public’s $498 million contribution was more than half of the project cost. Its figure has remained the same, but the Vikings have now committed $552 million to increase the project cost to $1.062 billion.

The proposed additional contribution is expected to be passed by the Minnesota Sports Facility Authority when it holds its next board meeting Friday.

For those who blanched at the thought of Minnesota picking up almost half-a-billion dollars in funding for a new stadium, they should at least take heart in the fact that the Wilfs continue to steadfastly refuse to allow corners to be cut on the project.

The Wilfs have made it clear that they want their first stadium to be an architectural showcase that is the envy of the NFL with the bar being raised on stadiums beyond the ostentatious Taj Ma Y’all that Jerry Jones built in North Texas.

Considering the building just recently hit the halfway mark, are there going to be more enhancements coming to the new stadium before the doors open? Given the Wilfs’ track record to date, don’t be surprised.

  • The Norv Turner influence on the Vikings is quietly rearing its head. On Wednesday, Vikings tight ends coach Kevin Stefanski held a private workout with Old Dominion’s Richard Ross, according to the Star Tribune. What makes Ross interesting is that he isn’t a college tight end. He’s a basketball player. Given the conversion Turner had on future Hall of Famer Antonio Gates, who was a college basketball player, it shouldn’t come as a surprise. Tony Gonzalez, another future Hall of Famer, was a college hoops star first. Even Kyle Rudolph turned down college basketball scholarships to play football. Beating-the-bush season is fully underway.

  • If it means anything, word has leaked that Jameis Winston scored a 27 on the Wonderlic test. It’s not a great score, but it’s representative enough to not be a red flag.

  • From the Longshot Bet Department comes this: Don’t be shocked if the Packers use a Day 3 pick in the draft on quarterback Shane Carden. Photos of the kid will be familiar to Packers fans because, in some shots, he’s a doppelganger for Brett Favre. Seeing as Sconny and Brett are close to kissing and making up for his return to the fold, it could a psychological fire under Aaron Rodgers to stay on his game.

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