Here's a quick idea which could be a nice thematic touch for the ballpark.
The old flour Gold Medal Flour Mill, located next to the new Guthrie theater (Source: RP)
From about the time of the Civil War until the mid-20th century, Minneapolis was the flour-milling capital of the world. It sounds a little dry, but the history of our city and much of the region derives from this fact.
You can find out more about this history down at the Mill City Museum, which is nestled among the ruins of that once-world-famous district.
Of course, mill architecture is also very distinctive, and in the years since flour milling waned from the local economy, many old buildings have been saved and put to new use. There is a very large complex located just off the northwest corner of Lake Calhoun (the Calhoun Isles condos) that is actually old grain elevators converted into housing. And other large portions of the riverfront ruins have been converted into luxury housing with unique spaces and spectacular views.
So why not incorporate some of this uniquely American architectural style into the ballpark? The photo at left was taken right next door to the new Guthrie Theater, and gives an idea of what elements could be worked in. For one thing, the round elevators could be echoed, perhaps as a tower of luxury suites somewhere down the left field line (not unlike the towers at Petco).
The tower could be made to open into the park on one side, and extend outside -- large enough to house the Twins offices on upper floors (so they can enjoy the skyline view) and even contain a unique restaurant or rooftop seating on the top floor. Tieing in to one of the team's goals, something like that could become a destination with or without a game to watch (but especially with).
For the top, the famous Grain Belt sign from Nicollet Island would make the perfect cap. Incorporating this amazing sign into the park has been suggested to me more times than I can count. I think it's a great idea because it is a direct tie-in to a major portion of local history. Plus it's very distincive, and in need of renovation before someone finally gets permission to dismantle it once and for all (which has nearly happened on multiple occasions).
The history of Minneapolis is in its mills, and this makes a perfectly appropriate architectural theme. In fact, it could become just the distinctive feature our new Twins ballpark needs!
"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 3042 found on this site. Click the image to be taken to the original post. A new list is created every 10 minutes.
Eleven flag poles
More flowers, more pennants.
This would have been the HERC side, though it's unclear just how far over the plant the retracted roof would have gone. My fear was always that they would have to shorten the track and more of the roof would have stayed over the ballpark. The only good retractable roof is one which disappears when not in use. I don't think they could have realistically created such a thing.
Steel going up fast.
Earl Santee, principle architect for HOK Sport, presents some concepts while Mike Opat listens
The Pro Shop.
Today's match-up (click to enlarge)
Print press box
First Avenue at left, bike parking area at lower right
The view from the upper concourse.
Dramatic night-time lighting.
We took refuge for a time in the Twins Pub where you can drink a beer (or just hang out) and listen to some ballpark tunes. The organ is decorated with a TC (of course) and what looked like drawings which Sue has received from kids.
The view from section 210
The Pantheon (with inset of the magic eye)
Click to see the full-size image.
Balcony of the Town Ball Tavern.
Discussions in progress on some very brown grass...
Click to enlarge.
The county of my birth!
Walkway construction is progressing
The tracks on the right will be moved to the newly-cleared area on the left. The edge of the ballpark will be about where the rocks and dirt meet.
Dave St. Peter introducing the first physical models of the ballpark in June 2007
Notice the temporary railing extensions
This is NOT Twins Territory anymore
Who Owns What (Click for larger version. Source: Ballpark Authority)
The angle on the main scoreboard from the Batter's Eye is surprisingly good -- acceptable, at least.
Wright's Marin County Hall of Justice, San Rafael, California (1959)