View images of the start-to-almost-finished creation of the Vikings locker room at U.S. Bank Stadium as the area nears completion.
Earlier this week the City of Minneapolis Community Development & Regulatory Services approved a reconfigured tailgating zone, sending the issue forward to a full City Council vote on Friday, May 27.
The progress comes on the heels of a years-long effort between the Vikings, the City and various neighborhood groups to ensure tailgating continues at U.S. Bank Stadium amid a shifting landscape. Since the stadium design was unveiled in 2013, over $1 billion in development has been announced, commenced or completed in the surrounding area, leading to a complete transformation of East Town and the loss of several surface parking lots. As a result, the tailgating situation has evolved, but the Vikings commitment to the storied tradition has not.
"The issue has always been at the forefront of our minds, which is why tailgating language was included in the original stadium term sheet agreed to by the City, the State and the Vikings in 2012," said Vikings Executive Vice President of Stadium Development and Public Affairs Lester Bagley. "For the past three years we have worked with various neighborhood associations and with the City of Minneapolis to see what might be possible in terms of a reconfigured zone that targets the remaining surface lots near U.S. Bank Stadium."
If the reconfigured zone passes the full City Council, up to 1,000 surface parking spaces will be eligible for tailgating, all at the discretion of private lot owners. The Vikings are currently in discussions with several owners regarding their willingness to lease the spaces to the team on game day, allowing the Vikings to provide the pregame and postgame activity. Ultimately the team is seeking nearly 700 Vikings-branded tailgating spaces that will be offered on a seasonal basis (At Mall of America Field, the team leased 800 tailgating spaces through three Star Tribune surface lots, all of which have now been developed).
"We think we are closing in on a resolution that will allow enough tailgating spaces to accommodate fans who want to continue this tradition," said Bagley.
Stay tuned to vikings.com for more information regarding tailgating following the City Council's vote next Friday.