This is getting serious. Reports in the comments for yesterday's entry have yielded stories about people accosted by security through the speaker in a parking ramp elevator, as well as being told by actual security guards to move along.
Viewed from the sidewalk on Seventh Street. No skyway infringement needed.
I've never experienced that, and I hope I never do. Frankly, it's very unsavory for both the city of Minneapolis and the Minnesota Twins. If the policy has actually been changed, a very big mistake is being made. I'm quite sure that the team is not behind it, and perhaps better do something -- quickly -- before their new prized location gets a very black mark against it.
My guess is that the team wants every fan in Twins Territory to come by and take a look, and maybe snap a picture. That's the best way to encourage ongoing excitement among the fan base. Chasing people off -- as if they are criminals -- for taking a peek is a pretty good way to ice the fan base. Chase the die-hard ballpark geeks off and the insult gets amplified pretty quickly.
Let me expand just a little bit on what I said yesterday. Keeping people from sleeping in the skyways is a Very Good Thing. Likewise, keeping panhandlers moving toward the exit is wise.
Musicians may be a gray area. If they're good, no problem. That's a really warm and welcome part of the culture. But if they're bad and it's just a fancy panhandling act, well that probably shouldn't be tolerated. Of course, they can't send music critics out to sort through them, but there's a common sense principle which applies.
Unfortunately, security policies often eschew common sense for rigidity and fearfulness. Those who are making these decisions (and their legal counsel) need to take a collective deep breath and come in off the ledge.
When it comes to skyway security, baseball fans are relatively benign. They come down past Target Center because they are curious and excited. Why would anyone want to stop that?
I'm happy to report that I have now booked my Shea Stadium/Yankee Stadium Farewell Tour! I'll be seeing both parks on the weekend of September 13 in a whirlwind 39-hour escapade. Of course, I'll be bringing my camera so you all can join in the fun.
I mentioned this last week in the comments, but my beloved Olympus C-2100UZ camera developed some dead pixels on its sensor after six years and about 16,000 photographs (many of the ballpark site). If you look closely, images from the past six weeks have a green dot near the center. We can't have that!
The new camera, the Olympus SP-570UZ, is finally here, and I'll be taking it down to the site sometime next week (hopefully not to be shooed away by a misguided security policy).
Here are a few recent images from the dying camera. Sorry about the dot (minimized on these images by reducing resolution and increasing compression), but the images of the steel work on the plaza are really worth it.
The plaza as seen from the B ramp.
Serious home dugout work in progress.
Now we know what the English phone booths were for...
"You talk about the magic, the aura, but what really makes a stadium is the fans. Concrete doesn't talk back to you. Chairs don't talk back to you. It's the people who are there, day in, day out, that makes the place magic."
– Bernie Williams
Explore the Site
Here are 50 images chosen randomly from the 3037 found on this site. Click the image to be taken to the original post. A new list is created every 10 minutes.
Sometime in the late 1980s: B ramp is under construction. Not yet built: Target Center, I-394 and the A ramp.
This is the trapezoid (for lack of a better name) in right center. Be sure to notice section of seats just below the pavilion and above the fence (which I hadn't noticed before). For those who are interested, what looks like an old-style scoreboard is in fact a high-def video board which will look, at times, like an old-fashioned scoreboard.
This view is from the roof of a warehouse which stood where the A ramp is today. The HERC is now located where the tracks turned north (toward the top).
Here's another view up Sixth Street toward where the plaza will meet First Avenue (it will hug Target Center all the way).
I suppose that one day my son will graduate from Mrs. Fields to Hooters. At least he won't have to travel too far. *Shudder*
(Click to enlarge.)
Go get 'em, boys!
The creative design of the admin building stands in stark contrast to the horribly pedestrian appearance of the LRT platform. This design looks like it came out of a public transportation manual.
Signage for the concession stand which is available from the plaza (plaques are up on the fencing)
...but you can get a feel for what it will be like.
Seventh Street circulation
Someone please get those poor people a drink of water. (Gate 34, after the game had started)
Yes, it's pretty tempting to just walk right in...
Here's the current overview from the south side of the B ramp (from which the banner at the top of this page was culled).
Poles through the gap
Click to enlarge. (Photo by Jared Wieseler)
A mini-freeway! (Police action in progress...)
I don't think this will remain a knothole, but the view is pretty cool.
These two sections are within a few feet of one another.
This looks from the base of the stairs, behind the big pillars, toward the street.
The gate has grown a row of sponsorship
Touring the Rapid Park site (L-R: Commissioners Wade, Vekich, Sykora, Cramer, and tour guide Chuck Ballentine, source: RP)
No offense, TC, but you're pointing exactly the wrong direction if you want people to use the ramp opening to your right...
Photo by Tyler Wycoff
A peek through a tiny gate.
From the TV camera platform -- the view you'll see on TV
Despite what those signs say, every one of these places was selling either snacks or Yankee memorabilia out of its front door. Do you suppose anything like this will spring up anywhere near the new Twins ballpark?
The circulation ramp on the north now has its louver framing.
A cold afternoon in 323, but we had our trusty Twins blanket -- made by my mom when Noah was born.
I had to hold the camera as far over my head as I could to get this shot, in which the infield is finally visible. It's a spot made for your average Timberwolves player.