Vikings owner Wilf makes stadium pitch

Associated Press

owner Zygi Wilf took the team’s new stadium pitch to the



Building and Construction
Trades Council’s annual convention Thursday, and said he’s confident the state
legislature will approve the plan next year.

The team
has not figured out how to pay for it, however, and Wilf offered no specifics
about sources of the money for the $954 million project toward which he has
pledged about $250 million. The Vikings have been working with the Metropolitan
Sports Facilities Commission on a plan to tear down and replace the Metrodome
on the same site.

After his
remarks to the group, Wilf told reporters he expected soon to reveal a
financing plan for the stadium, which is part of a larger redevelopment vision
Wilf has for the east side of downtown Minneapolis. He did not rule out asking
for statewide money.

reviewing all the different options on financing. … Rather shortly, when we
meet with the commission, we’ll come forward with a plan that we can all
review,” Wilf said.

rising construction costs, Wilf again stressed urgency for approving the plan
in 2008 to allow the new stadium to open in 2012. He mentioned the move made by
the Minnesota North Stars hockey team to

in 1993 as a warning of the danger of waiting.

want to learn from those mistakes — that it’s best to make sure we get things
accomplished quicker, sooner rather than later, before we can’t get it
done,” Wilf said.

Anfang, the council president, offered the group’s unanimous support for the
project. Touting thousands of union jobs it would bring to the state, Wilf
promised the group that both a new stadium would be built and the Vikings would
win a Super Bowl.

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