Stadium’s West Plaza Park approved

The Vikings’ new stadium continues to make progress and the upgraded design for the West Plaza Park is the latest.

The Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority played the field after the architect brought on to design the West Plaza Park adjacent to the new Vikings stadium more than doubled its proposal back in April. The MSFA approved a contract Friday with the architectural firm HKS to develop the plaza.

During the initial stadium design proposal, HKS agreed to a $400,000 contract for the designs to the project, but, upon review, the company stated that the scope of the design was beyond what it had bid for and came back with a proposal of $1.08 million to complete the project in April.

The MSFA said, “Wait…what?!” to the new proposal and opted to open the plaza project to others bidding. Two other bids were received, but both were higher than the HKS bid, so it approved the project. The overall cost for the Plaza West project is estimated at $5.4 million.

Vikings Executive Director of Communications Jeff Anderson said Friday that, while the plaza project approval was the biggest portion of Friday’s MSFA agenda, there were a couple of other milestone items Anderson pointed out.

Mortenson Construction announced that the project is now 65 percent complete and well on its way to meeting the July 29, 2016 date for turning over the keys to the facility. The Vikings also agreed to pay an additional $700,000 to cover the costs related to LED lighting fixtures, signage supports and costs related to a skyway connection to the north of the stadium.

The giant crane that has been part of the landscape of the project will begin being dismantled next week as the structure gets closer to being fully enclosed. While we’re still a year away from the opening of the stadium, it would appear that it is coming closer to fruition every day and that, as things stand, it will come in on time for a summer 2016 grand opening.

  • The eyes of the NFL world are going to be on Green Bay Saturday night as Brett Favre is inducted in the Packers Hall of Fame. The ceremony is going to be carried live on NFL Network, which perhaps is the first of its kind. Press conferences announcing retirements are routinely carried live, but the Hall of Fame induction by an individual team usually doesn’t garner national attention. Then again, this is Brett Favre and rules and standard practices don’t apply to players of his stature … much less returning home as one of their own after a seven-year exile.

  • Photos emerged this week of Adrian Peterson working out prior to arriving at training camp in a week. If you want to see motivation on a body, A.P. is it. He is completely shredded like he has never been before and you get the feeling big things are coming.

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