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Northern Home: Vikings Choose North Sideline at Gophers Stadium

View images of the new field that was installed at the University of Minnesota for the Vikings to play on during the 2014 and 2015 seasons.

The home team at TCF Bank Stadium will have a different vantage point on Sundays throughout the 2014 and 2015 seasons, as the Vikings have recently decided to occupy the north sideline for their home games, a departure from the Gophers custom of using the south sideline.

The change was made by General Manager Rick Spielman, Head Coach Mike Zimmer and the rest of the football staff after visiting the stadium several times during the offseason. A variety of reasons, primarily weather-related, went into the decision that the organization believes is the best for the football team.

The change will only be in place for the next two seasons and will not impact fans in the new stadium, as the team will return to the south sideline in the new venue.

"We are always sensitive to any changes that impact our fans, but we support our football personnel in making this decision that they believe is best for the football team," said Vikings Vice President of Sales and Marketing and Chief Marketing Officer Steve LaCroix. "Fans can be assured that the team will return to the south sideline when the new stadium opens in 2016."

When the Minnesota State Legislature voted in May 2012 to build a new home for Vikings football on the Metrodome site, the team knew one of the biggest challenges would be the two-year displacement during stadium construction. But in February of 2013, the Vikings and the University of Minnesota reached agreement that the organization would be allowed to use TCF Bank Stadium for the 2014 and 2015 NFL seasons. Since then, the Vikings have been working diligently internally and in partnership with the university to prepare for the transition. A few of the projects completed include the installation of a hydronic heated field, increased storage space throughout the facility, heating for various areas within the stadium, and concession upgrades in the stadium's concourses.

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