BallparkMagic.com
Next game at Target Field: Royals at Twins
Playoff Challenge    Archive    Target Field History    Theme:

Hello, February! (14 months out...)

February 2, 2009 1:46 AM

As promised, here's the continuation of yesterday's warm-weather photo tour.

P1310179a.jpg

Perched welder on the top of the canopy.


P1310187a.jpg

This maze of scaffolding is something you'll probably never see again.


P1310189a.jpg

Looking up Sixth Street, now barricaded for plaza extension.


P1310198a.jpg

Reverse view, now looking down Sixth toward the park. The Met Stadium flag pole will be right there!


P1310199a.jpg

If you arrive by bus, your first glimpse of the park will be the scoreboard's profile. (Viewed from the bus station in the B ramp.)


P1310201a.jpg

This is amazingly close to completed. It's a short tunnel entrance ramp to 394 underneath the outfield stands.


P1310202a.jpg

Scoreboard as viewed from Fifth Street.


P1310232a.jpg

Here's a first view of the surprisingly spacious walkway on Fifth between the ballpark and the LRT platform.

Still more new pix coming tomorrow.

Take a Seat

In conjunction with TwinsFest, the team revealed the variety of seating types which will be found in the ballpark.

twinsroofdeck3_small2.jpg

The rendering which excited a fan base! (Inset is an enlargement of the pictured neon sculpture.)

This came as a bit of a surprise, given that all earlier indications were that everything would be green, green, green.

It looked so green, that you'll probably remember my lobbying for some variation in the color scheme just to avoid the plague of sameness. I mean, any color looks great on opening day after 25 years of Yucky Blue, but without variety, any single color will eventually go out of fashion.

Well, my earlier protests now seem a bit naive. Color variation would have been great, but what we got is even better.

I mean, wooden seat backs? How cool is that? And it certainly wasn't on my radar. Unfortunately, my previous commitment meant that I did not get to TwinsFest, nor the press conference in which the seats were revealed (if I was invited, that is). I still have hope of getting some pictures of the sample seats, wherever they live now.

Here are a couple of links to media reports about the seating:

ph_history_timeline_small_1965.jpg

WCCO TV
KARE 11

And be sure to check out the official seating page on the team web site.

There are a couple of caveats, of course.

Apparently, 82% of us will be sitting in seats which are being advertised as 19 to 22 inches wide. That's all well and good, and certainly accurate, but there's a big difference between a 19-inch seat and a 22-inch seat. In fact, early documents revealed that some of the outfield seating, at 19 inches, will actually be smaller than the equivalent seats in the Metrodome.

Also, I'm not exactly sure just how the width of these seats is measured. The chair I'm sitting in now (a fairly standard Steelcase office chair) has a seating area of 20 inches wide by 19 inches deep. If I measure the width from the outside edges of the arm rests, it's 24 inches wide.

twinsroofdeck1_large2.jpg

A close-up of the rooftop party deck.

I point this out because this chair, which suits me very well in my work life, is substantially larger than almost every ballpark seat I've ever sat in. It's certainly much more spacious than anything at the Metrodome.

In fact, when I think about the Dome seats, I'm remembering that a chief contributor to their claustrophobic nature is the lack of arm rest space. My elbows always seem to be bumping into the person next to me unless I hug them tight to my body.

The team is trying to balance comfort with capacity, and I have no reason to think they are misleading us. But there are some key dimensions missing.

Likewise, the amount of leg room, said to be increasing by two inches (all over the park?) is probably measured from the front edge of one seat to the back of the seat in front of it. In order to know how this actually compares to the Metrodome, we will need the seat depths as well as widths.

Finally, as was pointed out in an earlier comment, the bleacher seating is not getting cup holders.

Now, I've expressed great affection for bleacher seating, especially for families, but without cup holders it could be a royal pain in the ass. I've been to plenty of ballparks without cup holders, and my camera bag always comes back soaked in somebody else's beverage. If they are available, the team should reconsider this decision.

Odds and Ends

Yesterday I tried to link to this great site which is following the Shea Stadium demolition. The site was down, but now it's back up.

For some, I'm sure this is a sad sight. But I'm having a hard time generating any emotion for the loss of this pit. I say, good riddance.

Thankfully, I saw it in person and have some pictures (yet to be published). But I think you really had to visit the place to understand how lousy it was. I immediately changed my lowest-ranked ballpark experience from the Metrodome to Shea, and it wasn't even close.

--

I'm sure you heard about the new ballpark partner. I have no further info on this yet, but I did notice a while back that U. S. Bank has a home plate in their corporate logo. How weird is that?

--

This isn't Twins-related, but the closing of Macy's at Brookdale does represent a serious opportunity for the Vikings. That site, under-utilized but perfectly situated, would make a great spot for a football stadium. There were early discussions about considering it for the Twins park because Brooklyn Center wanted in on the whole thing, but they ultimately proposed the land on which the Shingle Creek Target now sits.

Do I think the Vikings will get a new stadium? Yes. In Los Angeles. (As I've said many times before: When relocation is just a negotiating tactic, you hear about it all the time. When it's the actual plan, you won't hear a word until it happens.)

--

As I mentioned in a caption above, one lane of Sixth Street is now blocked off to facilitate construction of the plaza extension to First Avenue. Up at the corner of First and Sixth is where the old Met Stadium flag pole will be placed.

I'll meet you all there on opening day before the game!

Book It

As mentioned previously, I'm hoping to turn all of the info and photos I've collected here into a Target Field commemorative book to be published in time for Christmas 2010.

But I've had a request from a publisher to do a Met Stadium book first. I'm considering this, and starting to do some research into photos.

So, I'm wondering if YOU have any old photos of the Met, or if you know of someone who does. Drop me a line (rick at, you know the drill). I'd appreciate it.

Touring

I'll have more tomorrow. But for now, here's a video tour much like the one I took with Dan last fall. It was produced by MinnPost.com (there's a part two available by following the related videos link).

Comments


To utilized enhanced comment features, please enable cookies in your browser.

Very cool update rick, thanks for the info ... Vikings at the Brookdale sight, that could work. Brooklyn Center needs some serious help and the a Vikings stadium could help that city big time ...

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 06:32 AM by Derek Highlight this comment 1

Since Ziggy bought up a bunch of properties surrounding the Metrodome, he isn't going to want to go to Brooklyn Center. He profits when the neighborhood around the Metrodome is redeveloped after a new stadium is built.

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 07:32 AM by David_Mpls Highlight this comment 2

Zygi didn't buy anything downtown. He backed out of it.

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 09:35 AM by moda253 Highlight this comment 3

Ironic that while discussing the potential for a Los Angeles Vikings reality, your youtube video has a highlight of the Los Angeles Rams - against the St. Louis Cardinals whose current version played against the Steelers, featured in the clip prior. And I met Irv Cross on numerous occasions while interning at Fox 9 a few years back. Cool video.

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 10:25 AM by johnk Highlight this comment 4

Thanks for the heavy doses of updates Rick!

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 11:12 AM by OG Jeff Highlight this comment 5

rick, it sure would've been nice to have you do a stadium blog for us, but alas we are minnesotan no more.

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 11:42 AM by 2013 LA Vikings Highlight this comment 6

am i missing something? the canopy now looks like it's just covering a ring of traditional ballpark lights. i thought the canopy itself was supposed to illuminate the field?

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 11:45 AM by yeahklye Highlight this comment 7

No, the lights you see are to aid with construction. The lights for the field are going to be built into the roof when they add that in 2012. Until then all of the fans attending night games will be given flashlights to shine down.

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 12:37 PM by Karl Highlight this comment 8

This Los Angelino would love to have the NFL back, but I think it will be the Chargers, not the Vikes.

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 1:25 PM by Lafferty Highlight this comment 9

#15 horizonal canopy support beam is up! I WIN!!

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 1:26 PM by Locker Highlight this comment 10

I'd love to see the NFL in LA again too Lafferty. I don't care which team it is. I just hate the location....Inland Empire - YUCK! I wish they would just rebuild the Coliseum. The Chargers have a great fan base but I really wonder how many of those fans drive to SD from LA/OC. I'd rather see the Chargers stay in SD and have either Jacksonville or New Orleans move to LA. Nobody lives in New Orleans anymore and North Florida cares much more about college football than the NFL.

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 1:38 PM by kevin in az Highlight this comment 11

Yeah, I'm not a big fan of the City of Industry location either, although I'm not sure if there are currently any better spots. Maybe Carson?

Having been to Coliseum recently, I'd actually prefer if they would leave it for USC only. Adding all of the luxury suites and other 21st century gimmicks to attract the Super Bowl every few years would not only cost a lot, but it would take away most of the charm.

The Chargers do have a good fan base, but as you know, it's all about replacing the Murph. I think Jacksonville and New Orleans are also on the short list. Buffalo has also been mentioned, but they will likely try to move to Toronto. Heck, maybe the Rams will move back to LA. Who knows?

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 1:54 PM by Lafferty Highlight this comment 12

Congrats, Locker! Today was a true test of your horizontal beam spotting ability, as the canopy has made it tougher to differentiate between the boring old beams and the exciting new beams. Excellent work.

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 2:11 PM by kumbaya Highlight this comment 13

No one mentions the possible work stoppage in the NFL in 2011 (uncapped year in 2010) meaning the Vikings COULD only have two more seasons left in the Metrodome.

Between the bad economy and a possible work stoppage, this could get ugly even though the economy will eventually rebound.

I just hope there is some solution out there. We need to think outside the box and start being creative in ways to get a new venue built for the Vikings.

How about implementing a new scratch off lottery ticket for the Vikings with prizes including jerseys, autographed memorabilia, tickets to games, suites, party packages, road trip packages, etc.

How about the state loan the Vikings some money with low interest rate and have the Vikings pay back the loan when their new venue is built and the new revenues are coming in.

How about the state build in some clause that means the state gets a certain % of the revenue if the team is ever sold?

Build a big complex in the north or south suburbs with a state-run hotel/casino and the stadium next door. That will eventually pay for itself.

Another option would be to have the state purchase 51% (or more) of the team and sell bonds or something along those lines.

The best solution would be for the NFL and Vikings ownership to ultimately pay for a majority of this project, even though that is unlikely.

Bottom line is, there are solutions out there which will work, its just that Minnesota always waits until the last minute and makes things a lot tougher than they should be.

It's just ironic the Vikings started this whole stadium mess by wanting out of Met Stadium and now they are getting a taste of their own medicine by being stuck in the Metrodome with no new stadium deal in sight.

Even though the Metrodome was terribly planned and was built cheap, it is paid for and it has more than served its purpose over the last 25+ years. The RCA Dome in Indianapolis was built AFTER the Metrodome and is now demolished.

Minnesota just needs to be creative and think outside the box to resolve this stadium issue.

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 2:37 PM by Mike Brumley Highlight this comment 14

As a south metro guy, I totally agree with Brumley. Mystic Lake is raking in money hand over fist. If the state would build a casino of their own, the state would be swimming in loot.

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 2:49 PM by Steeks Highlight this comment 15

Why doesn't the state open a casino in the mall of america phase II that the people at MOA are trying to get built

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 3:20 PM by two birst one stone Highlight this comment 16

my name was suppose to be

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 3:24 PM by two birds one stone Highlight this comment 17

Here's a crazy idea. Owners should pay for the entire thing.

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 3:54 PM by Lafferty Highlight this comment 18

I just read in the MBA January meeting minutes that the enhanced plaza design will be unveiled in mid February. Also, the design for the skyway between parking ramp A and Target field is complete.

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 4:21 PM by Jeff Highlight this comment 19

Minnesota should kill two birds with one stone by thinking outside of the box and raking money hand over fist at the same time.

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 4:22 PM by Cliche Guy Highlight this comment 20

Taking money from gambleholics and old people for a Vikings stadium isn't something the state would do.

The NFL and the Zygi should pay for the whole thing. But they know they don't have to. So they'll keep asking for money and go wherever they get it.

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 4:28 PM by Abe Frohman Highlight this comment 21

Abe so Pohlad should have too then. And every other business in MN that has gotten a handout. You don't think only sports teams get help on financing their buildings do you?

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 5:04 PM by moda253 Highlight this comment 22

as always, very nice updates Rick

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 9:10 PM by luke Highlight this comment 23

Minnesota has already lost 4 teams, the Saints, Eskimos, Lakers and North Starts. The Saints became the White Sox, the Stars went to Dallas, Lakers to LA and Eskimos to contraction. Do we want to lose yet another professional sports team?

Several things to keep in mind:

1. All the pro teams we have lost were replaced by expansion teams or relocated teams. Why not just keep the team we already have?

We won't spend the $$$ to keep the teams we have, but we can spend money to attract an expansion team?

2. Why do we keep underfunding stadium projects and building sub par facilities like the Metrodump....err Metrodome? Why not build a quality stadium?

Either spend the money to build a quality facility that will last 30+ years, or don't spend a dime. Spending tax dollars to build a sub standard facility is a waste of money.

They spent over a decade debating the cost of a Twins stadium, and when they finally coughed up the money they tried to build on a budget.

As for the Vikings stadium, Wilf needs to lower expectations. The state will never approve a billion dollar facility, and we all know he won't spend enough of his own money to pay for it.

If we wait for the state or ownership to poney up the money, we will be waiting a decade like the Twins, and by then the building cost will be 2 billion not 1 thanks to inflation.

How do we get a new Vikings stadium then?

1. Tell the feds to stop printing money like crazy it just causes inflation and raises the price tag of building a new stadium. Every new dollar you print makes every other dollar worth less.

2. Do what the legislature won't do, bring in private corporations and individuals who have the money to loan out. 3M, General Mills, Land O' Lakes, Best Buy, Target, etc.

They each contribute x number of dollars towards the cost, and in exchange they get some basic marketing/ advertising deal AND the Vikings repay the loan.

You simply sign a 30 year no escape lease like the Twins did, and divide whatever corporation y pays by 30, and thats how much you give them in return each year, along with an undetermined amount of free advertising.

It would take multiple corporate sponsors (which Minnesota has), but they would get some free advertising and the Vikings would get some loans to help pay for the stadium.

Yes paying off loans might lower their payroll a bit, but they will much better off in a new stdium then the piece of garbage metrodump.

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 9:28 PM by Alex D. Highlight this comment 24

"...and [we lost the] Eskimos to contraction"

Debatable. Many of us would rather recognize the method of tracing the franchise that leads from the days of the Eskimos playing at Ordean Field (demolished in 2001) to their current identity as the Washington Redskins.

Posted on February 2, 2009 at 10:05 PM by born up north Highlight this comment 25

Nice write up Alex D. I just hope they get a stadium done somehow. I really wish they would do what the Twins did and save money with no roof.

Posted on February 3, 2009 at 01:48 AM by Matt Highlight this comment 26

I wish the sports-hating liberals would shut the @$*& up about new sports stadiums. What would it be like if we had to watch the Los Angeles Vikings play on Sundays?

Posted on February 4, 2009 at 10:10 PM by Twinsfanguy Highlight this comment 27

Twinsfanguy,

If the Vikings were playing in Los Angeles and it saved us for paying for the majority of a billion dollar stadium, it would be an improvement.

The Gophers are more interesting anyway.

Posted on February 5, 2009 at 1:46 PM by David Highlight this comment 28


This page was last modified on January 26, 2010.



"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 3045 found on this site. Click the image to be taken to the original post. A new list is created every 10 minutes.








Our engineer.



The Metrodome hot dog vendor. (Source: RP)



This view looks through the opening in the fence where the crosswalk will be.



Here you can see the real beauty of the Seventh Street side, and get a solid sense of why the overall design really works. The building's purpose is clearly visible, there are numerous connections from inside to outside, scale is nicely mitigated, the stone is attractively used, materials are pleasantly mixed and truly complementary. It's just a winner in so many ways.






Here's an idea of what these Loge Boxes are all about. That guy is a waiter with no fans to serve. They seemed to have one server for about every four boxes.






Jose Alvalade XXI Stadium in Lisbon, Portugal has towers much like I'm imagining to hold up our canopy while also making a bold statement on the horizon






Center field seating



TC caps everywhere! (Is that you?)


















Click to enlarge.






Stairs down to the sidewalk from the skywalk over Seventh






The main concourse is a very busy place at all times.






A distinct misstep, ostensibly to guard against missteps. But methinks I smell a lawyer...



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*









Yankee Stadium






The former Ford manufacturing plant (now Ford Centre).



Spring of 1982 (click to enlarge greatly -- can you pick out Kent Hrbek?)



Panels arriving on flatbed trailers in front of the Twins' dugout.



Looking up Sixth Street, now barricaded for plaza extension.



Hops! (conceptual only)



The circulation ramp on Fifth Street is shaping up very quickly.






Photo by Tyler Wycoff



The Ballpark Authority at work (Source: RP)






A closer look at the grid on the Pro Shop.



Before the team came out to warm up, Kirby Puckett, Jr. was playing Frisbee out in center.



This mural is behind the staircase. The window looks onto the promenade, and the door goes to a kitchen.



Washington



A view from up (and in) the street.









Now, why is there horse shit on the street next to Target Field? (I saw it in two places. Mounted police maybe?)



These two sections are within a few feet of one another.



Looking back toward downtown from the end of the balcony


Glossary

BPM - Ballpark Magic

BRT - Bus Rapid Transit

DSP - Dave St. Peter

FSE - Full Season Equivalent

FYS - Fake Yankee Stadium (see also: NYS)

HERC - Hennepin Energy Resource Company (aka the Garbage Burner)

HPB - Home Plate Box

HRP - Home Run Porch

LC - Legends Club

LRT - Light Rail Transit

MBA - Minnesota Ballpark Authority (will own Target Field)

MOA - Mall of America

MSFC - Minnesota Sports Facilities Commission (owns the Metrodome)

NYS - New Yankee Stadium

SRO - Standing Room Only

STH - Season Ticket Holder

TCFBS - TCF Bank Stadium

TF - Target Field

Selected Bibliography - Analysis
 


(1993)
 


First Edition (1992)
 


Second Edition (2006)
 


(2008)
 

Selected Bibliography - Surveys
 


(1975)
 


Second Edition (1987)
 


Not a "Third Edition" exactly,
but it replaced the above title
(2000)
 


(2000, large coffee table)
 


Original edition (2000, round)
 


Revised edition (2006, round)
 


(2001, medium coffee table)
 


(2002, small coffee table)
 


(2003, medium coffee table)
 


(2004, very large coffee table)
 


(2006, very large coffee table)
 


Combines the previous two titles
(2007, medium coffee table)
 

Selected Bibliography - Nostalgia
 


(1992)
 


Book and six ballpark miniatures
(2004)
 

Complete Bibliography

BallparkMagic™  •  3300 Bloomington Avenue  •  Minneapolis, MN 55407  •  (612) 392-3104
This is a fan site and in no way affiliated with the Minnesota Twins, Minnesota Ballpark Authority, or Major League Baseball.
Unless otherwise noted, this page and all of its contents are Copyright © 2001-2010 BallparkMagic/Lowell (Rick) Prescott.
All Rights Reserved. Used by permission. Privacy Notice