Maybe this is how Gardy feels after being tossed out of a game. I mean, there's nothing quite as humbling as being shown the door by The Authorities.
Well, that's exactly what happened to me today down at Ford Centre -- that spectacular, Borg-like building on the northwest corner of the ballpark site. My company once had space in that building, and I've been going down there to take photos of the ballpark site (and now ballpark construction -- how cool is that!) since October 31, 2001 when I snapped this beauty (click to enlarge greatly):
Today I was interrupted by a voice which said, simply, "Hello. Who are you?"
Tough question. Um, I'm just some guy taking pictures of the ballpark construction for a web site which is kind of a hobby of mine and that a lot of people visit to see some pictures because it's kind of their hobby too and I've been doing it for a long time and sorry if that's wrong. (That's about how it came out.)
The guard was very professional -- even cordial -- and explained that they had been warned in an email not to let anyone take pictures of the ballpark from the building. No further explanation was given. They must read the Downtown Journal.
I might feel a little less humiliated if I'd gotten something really cool to show you all, but this is what I got before getting the boot:
I'm hoping the management company is willing to consider an exception to this policy (what with the Pohlads owning the building and all), and I'm pursuing that because it would be a shame to lose this perspective. But I will, of course, abide by their wishes.
Meanwhile, I recently got a great offer from another building owner in the neighborhood, who was eager to welcome me to his roof with open arms. I've been trying to find the time to pursue that, and now will make it a priority.
One has to wonder what all the hullabaloo is about. My new camera (the Olympus SP-570UZ, which has been pretty disappointing overall) can get a lot more into the frame when zoomed all the way out. But that comes at the expense of glare when shooting through a window. This means that shooting through the skyway windows just doesn't work anymore.
Instead, I'm outside and down on the street, where the view may actually be better. Even with a little bit of reflection on the subject, I still think the worries about people taking photos from the skyways are perplexing. I've said it before, and I stick by it, that the people who make such decisions are just doing their jobs and their rules must be respected. But there is a point at which it becomes a little, I don't know, sad.
Vigilance is one thing. But when the machinery of society is jittery about a guy with a camera pursuing his little hobby (which, admittedly, may seem strange to some), then it has already given in to its would-be enemies. The battle is already lost.
To the Goods
Here is some new limestone:
Here is where it appears there will be exit from the circulation ramps after the game:
Here is where we will buy tickets:
Here is a rest room (presumably for men):
Here is the current view up Seventh Street:
Here is the steel work in progress on the Fifth Street side (yes, the sidewalk is open again):
Here's a view from the north of the freight tracks snaking beneath the promenade:
Here's the Seventh Street facade (notice the glare I mentioned):
"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 3004 found on this site. Click the image to be taken to the original post. A new list is created every 10 minutes.
Legends Club seats feature in-seat service
First, an overview. The base of the plaza here will meet the base of Sixth Street at Second Avenue.
Look familiar? Unfortunately, just adding little balconies with cool angles will not offset the pervading ugliness.
Target Plaza in model form
New Concept Drawing - No Roof
There are some great banners on fencing down Target Way. I'm not sure just who sees them.
Photo by Jeff Ewer
Limestone still dominates the Seventh Street walkway from a pedestrian point of view. But brick take over as you move upward -- a concession to cost, no doubt.
Lots of pix waiting to be seen from Bert's memorable night.
This is where you will put out your butts -- I mean enjoy some pretty flowers.
No offense, TC, but you're pointing exactly the wrong direction if you want people to use the ramp opening to your right...
Some details are visible here, like the back of an escalator.
That's Noah and my brother, Chris, checking out the Loge Box amenities
4th inning in the nearly deserted Home Run Porch View Level in left.
Can you name that field? (Braemer Park, Edina)
(Click to enlarge greatly)
Not much facade left to be finished at this point.
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.
Left field bench seating
New section labels, but some curious choices.
Compare this picture, from the open house in March, with the one above and you'll see that some furniture reconfiguration has taken place.
Gate 34 Puckett
They help create a psychological safe area along the plaza edge, and help you forget that cars are zipping by directly beneath you.