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A Football Stadium Takes Shape

August 31, 2008 11:55 PM

It's August, so it's inevitable that talk turns to football. I thought you might be interested to see this shot I took while waiting for the Park-N-Ride bus to the fair:


TCF Bank Stadium (click to enlarge)

I came toward the campus on the Franklin Avenue bridge, and was stunned to see the stadium from there -- rising above the neighborhood, already with a kind of sturdy dignity. What a sight.

Football stadiums interest me far less than baseball stadiums, as you've probably already guessed. A football field is a big rectangle, and every field is identical in shape to every other, whereas no two baseball fields are ever exactly the same. It's kind of like the difference between a Chips Ahoy and the chocolate chip cookies your mom makes.


An arch under construction.

A football stadium is vast and often symmetrical. The more massive, the better. The fan is held at arm's length from the game (or brought grotesquely into it by some linebacker's arm motions).

A baseball stadium, in contrast, curls around the game like a glove around a ball. There is a limit to how big the crowd should be, and a sense that the crowd is always part of the game (especially in wave-proof ballparks). What's more, the shape of the baseball stadium has a direct impact on the playing of the game (fences, foul territory, backgrounds, etc.). I like that.

Don't get me wrong. It's not that I dislike football stadiums. I just find them less interesting. It's a personal bias, nothing more.

But as football stadiums go, I have to admit that TCF Bank Stadium is quite a beauty. It's enough to make me look forward to homecoming of 2009, and to at least make an attempt to get a ticket.

In 1981, the last year of Memorial Stadium, I was a freshman at the U, living as a border in the Deke house next to Newman Center (rent: $106 per month). I will never forget the homecoming parade down University Avenue, nor the deafening din in the field house. It was a bit perplexing to a kid from Princeton, but electrifying nonetheless. I never got to see a game at Memorial Stadium, but they all seemed to spill over into the entire neighborhood and fill the campus.

While it isn't fair to call the Metrodome a failure (it came in on time and under budget, and has, after all, housed three major sports teams effectively and economically for 26 years), but I think characterizing it as a mistake is completely fair and accurate. Just what the hell were we all thinking?


The county of my birth!

I remember how the Dome was sold to the U students as just being "at the opposite end of the campus" from Memorial Stadium. It didn't take long to realize that the Dome was not anywhere near the campus -- at least psychologically.

There would be no more homecoming parades -- at least not like I'd witnessed in the fall of '81. And the football team would seem somehow removed from the day-to-day life of the University. They were the Gophers, but not my Gophers. They weren't really anybody's. And as they got worse, it got easier on campus to sort of forget they existed. (Same with the marching band -- not that they got worse, they did not -- but they were just plain not as visible, a very big loss.)

So I agree with those who say that this new stadium will be a boon to recruiting, and has the potential to return the team to greatness someday just by returning them to campus. By "greatness" I mean within the U of M student body -- a source of identity and pride regardless of how well they play.

I haven't really followed the design or construction of TCF Bank Stadium. But the facade already has a repetitive simplicity which really does say "college football". It also does a dignified job of referring to its predecessor (which stood just across University Avenue) without getting too kitschy. The inclusion of the names of all the counties (one per pillar opening) is really cool -- a very nice touch.

In a few years we will look back at the Metrodome days like a bad dream -- not actually sure that it ever really happened. That will be a great day.


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Nice, thats gonna be a beautful stadium, maybe bring back the passion

Posted on September 1, 2008 at 09:02 AM by mazaratirick Highlight this comment 1

Never was at memorial stadium either just wondering how big or small it was compared to the new one.

Posted on September 1, 2008 at 2:04 PM by Leroy Highlight this comment 2

I think (correct me if I am wrong) that Memorial Stadium was similar in size seating 50-55k. However, at that time, Memorial Stadium was one of the largest venues whereas TCF Bank Stadium will be a smaller venue in terms of capacity compared to the much larger stadiums we see today.

Posted on September 1, 2008 at 2:23 PM by Craig - Plymouth Highlight this comment 3

I think it will seat around 50K and is set up to add 30K in the future making it around 80K.

Posted on September 1, 2008 at 2:34 PM by Jared Highlight this comment 4

Nice Pictures! It is just amazing how fast TCF Bank stadium has gone up what a difference steel makes in construction vs the concrete at the new ballpark, just wondering how far along the new ballpark would be if they had used steel in the construction.

Posted on September 1, 2008 at 3:05 PM by NewGuy Highlight this comment 5

I think the designers of the stadium did a great job of laying out the stadium. Driving by yesterday, I was really impressed how the "mouth" of the field opens up to those coming towards the field from's really welcoming while also being strong and dominating. Let's hope the Gophers bring back big crowds on Saturday afternoon - I know I'll be there!

Posted on September 1, 2008 at 3:13 PM by OG Jeff Highlight this comment 6

Thanks for mentioning that OG Jeff. I meant to include it. It really is a striking view from the campus side, but I didn't get any good pictures of it.

That opening also appears to point right at where Memorial Stadium used to be -- another subtle homage. Very classy.

Posted on September 1, 2008 at 3:34 PM by Rick 7

Wow the old stadium was that big. Its A Shame I didnt get to see A game there at least once. Its hard to imagine college football stadiums that big and bigger. I am sure it will be very nice to have football back on campus. Just to see a football game outside would be cool have not done that since the days of the old Met.

Posted on September 1, 2008 at 3:51 PM by Leroy Highlight this comment 8

Memorial Stadium had a capacity of about 60,000. The Vikings played the Packers there on October 5, 1969 when the Twins were hosting Baltimore in the American League Championship Series at the Met. The attendance for the afternoon was listed at 60,740.
As far as the Metrodome is concerned, the U of M was lured there with the promise that recruits would find it desirable to play in a big league stadium. Dome backers needed the Gophers on board to sell the idea of a new stadium to the public. Well, as we all know, that didn't trun out to be the case. With the exception of two years with Lou Holtz and some moderate success with Glen Mason, the Gophers have been miserable in the Dome.
However, they weren't really a force at Memorial Stadium since 1960 either. The venue doesn't matter. The school's commitment to winning plays a bigger part. The Gopher's best recruiting tool, that being the legacy of gridiron success in the years leading up to 1960, were quickly squandered away as Gopher teams became irrelevent throughout the sixties and seventies.
Now we're being told that bringing the games back on campus will turn things around. But the Gopher football program was on the slide for twenty years prior to the opening of the Dome. And the idea that campus life is going to bring in top recruits seems like a specious argument, given that the University of Miami played well away from campus at the Orange Bowl during their heyday, and play even further from campus now at Dolphin Stadium. UCLA's program is on the upswing and still enjoys large crowds, even though the campus is west of Beverly Hills and they play their home games in Pasedena. Look those two spots up on a map and see how far away they are. At least you can see the Metrodome from some of the upper floors of campus buildings. UCLA used to play their home games at the LA Coliseum, which is miles away from campus, next door to the USC campus.
Northwestern University, which has been to a Rose Bowl in recent memory, plays their games off campus as well.
Let's not forget that big-time college football programs house their players in special dorms, and keep them busy with football related activities most of the day. There's really very little campus interaction between players and students anymore. Just about the only time their paths cross anymore is in downtown bars.
All that being said, I'm glad to see them opening the new building next year and I hope that the increased revenue streams (The REAL reson for the move) will bring back the Gopher glory years.

Posted on September 1, 2008 at 10:05 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 9

Not sure how accurate this is, but here is what I was able to find for Memorial Stadium

Memorial Stadium Capacity:
52,809 (1924-69)
56,652 (1970-81)

Posted on September 1, 2008 at 10:15 PM by Dean from Eagan Highlight this comment 10

I love this site. Thank you Rick.

Posted on September 1, 2008 at 10:46 PM by ice Highlight this comment 11

I believe some of the attendance records show crowds of over 60K in Memorial Stadium, but those were probably standing room only or temporary seating expansions.

Oh, and click on my link for a construction photo gallery. The second picture has a really good shot from 4th Street facing east into the stadium. Even if you don't have a ticket to the game, you'll still feel the excitement from the crowd just by looking into that open end.

Posted on September 1, 2008 at 11:26 PM by Chris Highlight this comment 12

I can't believe how far this ballpark has come in one year since the groundbreaking!

Posted on September 1, 2008 at 11:52 PM by Tom in ND Highlight this comment 13

It's about time the Gophers get out of the dome. I've always been jealous of the atmosphere in Ann Arbor, Columbus, and even Madison. Hopefully this stadium will create a similar feeling (with less people.)

I like the way this stadium is looking so far, but the facade reminds me too much of Citi Field, at least from the wideshot angle.

Posted on September 2, 2008 at 11:09 AM by Lafferty Highlight this comment 14

First off Rick...I love the site. I'm completely addicted to your stadium updates.

Regarding the Gopher Stadium: Thank God there will finally be outdoor college football. It will make the U feel much more like the major university it is. And the Saturday atmosphere should be great.

My favorite part about the stadium is the big, open, inviting entry way. Should feel fabulous during the football season. I also like the county names. I think it will be a great addition. But, as I compare the two new stadiums, its funny how much better I think the new Twins stadium will be. (And I don't think I say that just because I'm a big baseball fan.) I think Gopher stadium is good looking...but like the comment above, good looking in a Citi Field, fake retro kind of way. It's really a lovely stadium, but I guess I think the new Twins stadium will be a truly special one-of-a-kind place.

Regarding the Twins Stadium: Has landscaping played such an important role in other stadiums? With the greenery on the outfield wall (how will that work without being destroyed by fans?) and the trees/planters in the pavilions, its seems like there is a good amount of attention being paid to beautifying with landscaping. I know LA and KC are doing a lot of it with their renovations, but that is mostly to mitigate the giant parking lots they're currently surrounded by. Folks who have been to other new stadiums: has there been much landscaping to note? Anyways...I think its a great touch.

Posted on September 2, 2008 at 11:37 AM by Dale Highlight this comment 15

Landscaping around ballparks does play into the overall presentation of the facility. I'd say it sets the tone, or creates a "vibe" when fans are approaching and entering a stadium. My favorite landscaping: AT&T Park in San Francisco. The palm trees, water, statues, and the park that sits on the opposite side of McCovey Cove really welcomes fans. Wrigley Field is pretty cool too, with the neighborhood and bars - but that's not really landscaping...

Posted on September 2, 2008 at 11:56 AM by OG Jeff Highlight this comment 16

I don't mind the "retro" look of TCF Bank Stadium because its an urban facility on campus. If you are integrating this new football stadium in the heart of campus, it should definitely resemble the campus buildings. It ties in perfectly with Williams Arena and Mariucci Arena as well as the surrounding area. You think of college football and you think of the old brick stadiums.

Citi Field is different in that its out in the middle of a giant parking lot. Not very urban and retro feeling at all even though I like how they tied in the strong resemblence of Ebbets Field.

Posted on September 2, 2008 at 1:12 PM by Luke H. Highlight this comment 17

From the webcam, it looks like the new Gophers stadium has bleachers, is this correct? Is that normal for a college football stadium? I just thought that maybe we would have regular seats like at a NFL stadium or MLB ballpark, since they are spending a lot of money to build it. Other than being uncomfortable I have nothing against bleachers, so long as its normal for college football stadiums to use them, and that we are not just doing it to save a few bucks.

The inside of the Gopher's stadium looks really nice, so we should have a of of the line stadium for years to come.

I should also point out that CBS sports will be televising some DII college football, and that the University of Minnesota Duluth game vs Southwest Minnesota State will be nationally televised. 9/11/2008 at 7pm.

Posted on September 2, 2008 at 1:16 PM by Alex Highlight this comment 18


First, nice name.

Second, I believe the Gopher Stadium will have a mix of chair-backs and bleacher seats. And yes, it is perfectly normal for college football stadiums. I'd even say it's beyond normal - having chairbacks is the exception.


Regarding landscaping, first you have to define 'landscaping.' Are we talking about urban streetscapes or pretty gardens here? One is appropriate in an urban setting, the other is an odd duck.

Perhaps my favorite ballpark for how it interfaces with the city is Fenway. Wrigley has the great neighborhood, but Fenway just bleeds together with the city along Yawkey Way. No real intense landscaping at all, but a great experience.

Posted on September 2, 2008 at 1:55 PM by Alex B. Highlight this comment 19

the fewer chairback seats there are in any stadim, the better. more bleacher seats equals more people getting off their arses to cheer or just stand for most of the game.

Posted on September 2, 2008 at 2:03 PM by Betaband Highlight this comment 20

yes it's commonplace for college football stadiums to have bleachers. i went to a florida gator game when i lived in tampa a few years ago and it was the most fun i've ever had a sporting event. i can't wait for tcf bank stadium to open. i agree it's a simple, understated design and blends well with the surrounding campus.

although i personally love the twins ballpark facade, i've heard a couple of people who think the stone gives a cold impression. having just driven by the site last week, i think the stone looks even better in person than it does in any pic or on the webcam view.

Posted on September 2, 2008 at 2:04 PM by Tim Highlight this comment 21

My comments about landscaping were specifically regarding trees, shrubs, and plants as an aspect of the design. With the Twins stadium, instead of being a decorative aside, the main pavilion has a mini forest that patrons are meant to interact with. The same, to a lesser extent, by the pro shop entrance. Its very clever, I think, how these elements both soften the ultra-urban environment of the stadium as well as give the main entry a unique and attractive feel.

And the greenery on the outfield wall is a nice wink at Wrigley without being a complete rip-off of the ivy.

Posted on September 2, 2008 at 2:13 PM by Dale Highlight this comment 22

amen betaband. i went to Ann Arbor and people called us a champagne crowd because some of the students actually sit at halftime. it's amazing that some of these pro sporting events are instituing policies that you have to sit during the game or you could get thrown out. Sure, if you're lazy sitting is great but there is no more fun an event than one where 112,000+ are standing and screaming all at once...

tim -- i think it's hard for the stone not to look cold right now, because it's sitting on a bare steel and concrete structure. once the glass, wood, and surrounding plantings go in I think the elements will blend nicely. i agree with you that it looks even better in person.

Posted on September 2, 2008 at 5:09 PM by mplsgreg Highlight this comment 23

I am getting really pissed off at the Twins excuse my language. I mean they blew a 5-1 lead again which sounds like a broken record. If it weren't for all the blown leads we could be 3 or 4 games ahead in the division but the Twins keep on laying a goose egg like they did tonight.

Posted on September 2, 2008 at 9:06 PM by NewGuy Highlight this comment 24

I hate to be pessimistic about the Twins, but the reality is, the only chance they have to compete is if the starting pitchers take it to the next level and start pitching into the 7th/8th innings.

This 5 and 6 inning stuff is getting old, especially in August and September when you should be stepping it up. Yes, they have had several "quality starts" from Baker, Blackburn, Slowey, Liriano, and Perkins, but its time to start taking these "quality starts" into the 7th and 8th innings.

That is the only way the Twins can compete right now with such a lackluster bullpen. It truly shows how much we miss Neshek. The most frustrating thing seems to be that every time the Twins offense scores, the pitching gives the runs right back the following inning.

It also doesn't help matters when our offense puts up 11 runs one night and 2 runs the following night. We need more consistency from our offense as well. Yes, you do run into great pitching on occasion, and yes, you won't score 11 runs each and every night, but a little more consistency wouldn't hurt from the offense.

To say the least, no one expected the Twins to be tied for first place on September 2. It would just be nice to gain some ground and take advantage of the inconsistent play by the White Sox.

Posted on September 2, 2008 at 10:09 PM by Leonard - Burnsville Highlight this comment 25

Thankx for putting up the pics.. Doesn't get any better..

Posted on September 3, 2008 at 02:33 AM by Damian Highlight this comment 26

The Twins should have won that Oakland game that they lost in the 9th. Losing to the Jays on the road is what they always do.
Now that Korecky is finally up here, Bonser can go back to long relief.

Posted on September 3, 2008 at 11:12 AM by Dave T Highlight this comment 27

Why is bonser on this team?

Posted on September 3, 2008 at 11:18 AM by he sucks Highlight this comment 28

Yeah - BONSER SUCKS! Just like Scott Baker blew chode for the past few years.

Posted on September 3, 2008 at 11:26 AM by The Bandwagon Highlight this comment 29

They poured concrete at the left field building today. YAY!

Posted on September 3, 2008 at 11:37 AM by Lafferty Highlight this comment 30

Winona Mike,

While I generally agree with your comments, I do have to take exception to your characterization of campus life. Football players living in special dorms and shut away from the student body may be true of some places, but it was definitely not the case at Notre Dame when I attended ('92-'96, including the FSU-ripoff championship of '94 and the disaster that was Ron Powlus). I'm sure there are similar experiences at other schools as well.

All athletes live in the regular dorms with everyone else (there are no fraternities or sororities at ND and very few people ever live off-campus). Hell, I played catch with Tom Krug (backup QB before a defect in his neck vertebrae ended his career) in my dorm hallway with a bunch of other guys -- never before caught a football thrown so hard!

Now, that's not to say the players don't get special treatment -- they absolutely do and it's one of the things I really disliked about campus life. For example, players got private tutors while other kids struggling in classes had to find time with overbooked teaching assistants. But it was not the case that there was some separate community of athletes away from the rest of the student body.

And a stadium on campus makes a HUGE difference. I was in the marching band and it was a real thrill to march through campus at 7am for pre-game practice. Students would come out in bathrobes to watch us go by. And then the march to the stadium -- HOO BOY! A sea of people stretching all the way down the quad. There's a real buzz generated when students can walk to the stadium with the alumni, the band and even the players (ND has a tradition where players attend mass Saturday morning and people cheer them on as they walk from the basilica to the stadium on the other side of campus).

I strongly encourage those who have been so unfortunate as to only know the Dome as the Gophers' home (I am a member of that crowd) to attend a game at Michigan Stadium, Spartan Stadium, Camp Randall, etc. and see what a real campus atmosphere can do for a school. It's night and day. It alone won't make the football program better but it sure is a heck of a lot more fun!

Posted on September 3, 2008 at 11:48 AM by David Highlight this comment 31

I hope I didn't leave anyone with the impression that an on-campus stadium for football (Or any other U of M sport) wasn't a nice idea or that it held no appeal for me. I can recall going to a game or two at Memorial Stadium back in the day (All bench seats, by the way) and I had a lot of fun. My problem is with the seeming attempt to sell the return to campus as the magical elixir that will remedy the 45 year malaise under which Gopher Football has languished.
Heck, I believe that they belong on campus if only for the sake of the fan experience.
And while Notre Dame may be different, there are big-time programs that do segregate players in separate dorms and tend to keep the team at arm's length. It's terrific when the players are part of the fabric of campus life, and I think this should always be encouraged. Perhaps it would help to send players bound for greater things off as more well-rounded individuals, less prone to misadventure.
And as far as the facade of the TCF Bank Stadium is concerned, I like it. It brings to mind, as others have said here, the facade of the old stadium that once stood south of Williams Arena. It also had dozens of arched entryways just like the new building seems to have.
And when you speak of bench seating, in places like a lot of college football venues, people with season tickets, or some other sort of financial commitment to the football program appear to have cushions left at their seats, leaving the sideline stands in these places with a speckled look.
Does anyone know exactly what's going on there?

Posted on September 3, 2008 at 7:14 PM by Winona Mike Highlight this comment 32

Leadoff triple by Tolbert in the 5th inning to only leave him stranded at 3rd base

Posted on September 3, 2008 at 7:25 PM by John Tesmer Highlight this comment 33

The new Gopher stadium looks really stunning and it is what we think of when we think of college football with the bricks on the outside of the stadium and other things. Going back to the ballpark i think the Twins and DSP think that we have forgotten about the 2nd webcam since he put it twice on his stupid blog that the camera was going to be installed, but apparently we can't take a word of his in any future blog.

Posted on September 3, 2008 at 7:36 PM by NewGuy Highlight this comment 34

Im not a bandwagon fan, bonser pitched ok at the end of the 06 year but since then he has been terrible, he needs to go. Baker pitched solid last year.

Posted on September 3, 2008 at 8:07 PM by he sucks Highlight this comment 35

"Unbelievable" - following the Jason Pridie error in right field in the bottom of the 9th inning allowing the Blue Jays to tie the game

Posted on September 3, 2008 at 9:03 PM by Dick Bremer Highlight this comment 36

Why do we always play sub-par in Toronto? 6-8 is the best we can finish this 14 game road trip, not bad considering we have given away at least 4 games it seems. Still only one game back from the White Sox though!

Posted on September 3, 2008 at 10:23 PM by confused guy Highlight this comment 37

It was just not Pridie's error in the 9th that cost us the game. It was at least (and so many more):

Punto's error
Tolbert's error
Gomez, Span, and Casilla not getting Tolbert in from third when he lead off the 5th inning with a triple.

We have handed away every single loss this game. You can't blame just one person, multiple people are responsible for each loss (bullpen, errors, double plays, etc). This team looks tired and dejected. Let's finish the trip, head home, and hopefully regain our composure.

Luckily Chicago has sucked just as much as us in the last couple of weeks. They could have easily buried the Twins in a 5+ game deficit but instead their team is having all the same issues as ours.

Posted on September 4, 2008 at 08:17 AM by annoying customer Highlight this comment 38

Remember when it was May and DSP was promising a new webcam in "the weeks to come"? How I long for the good ol' days when I thought we'd be looking at a 2nd angle...

Posted on September 4, 2008 at 11:37 AM by OG Jeff Highlight this comment 39

I remember when it was May and the Twins got swept by the Blue Jays in 3 games at the they are following suit with another 3 game sweep to the Blue Jays, this time in Toronto.

Maybe, just maybe, the Twins front office can follow the team's trend and follow through with their plans for a second webcam...

Posted on September 4, 2008 at 8:56 PM by Disappointed Fan Highlight this comment 40

it seems as though our sept call ups are hurting our playoff chances...

Posted on September 5, 2008 at 12:20 PM by mazaratirick Highlight this comment 41

On the webcam it looks like they have started installing steel where the view is blocked by the parking garage. I assume it is the start of the oufield structure.

Posted on September 5, 2008 at 8:53 PM by NewGuy Highlight this comment 42

Right now I don't care if they win another game...I just want my 2nd @%$@!$# WEBCAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted on September 5, 2008 at 8:54 PM by kevin in az Highlight this comment 43

No webcam,... so how about a few new pics from the Minnekada building?

Posted on September 6, 2008 at 5:28 PM by Locker Highlight this comment 44

Goodbye pennant race.

Posted on September 6, 2008 at 6:45 PM by JohnF Highlight this comment 45

I went to that game this afternoon and what a disgrace to have to walk into that Metrodome on a beautiful Saturday afternoon in September when your team is in the midst of a pennant race...and to make things worse, our bullpen gave away another lead. I think Gardenhire and his staff should be ashamed of taking starting pitchers out too early, especially in September when they should be able to go the extra distance and push themselves. They only pitch once every five or six days and its not like their arms will fall off as soon as they go over the 100 pitch count (removed Baker from game with 101 pitches thru 7 1/3 innnings). When your bullpen has struggled as much as it has, let Baker try to get himself out of the jam in the 8th, if not, bring in Nathan and make him pitch a two-inning save. We didn't pay Nathan all of that money to sit in the bullpen and not pitch (after our other relievers have blown leads).

Just an overall disappointment for the 42,000+ fans at the Metrodome today...

Posted on September 6, 2008 at 9:02 PM by Craig - Plymouth Highlight this comment 46

Lets go Brewers, We have the wild card spot almost locked up!
p.s. love your blog rick

Posted on September 7, 2008 at 01:38 AM by pf386 Highlight this comment 47

Can we all just ease up on the 2nd webcam? I would like it too, but it does get old hearing about it. You're not going to be able to see much more than you can from the current one. View of the progress in center field, which is blocked by the parking ramp, would soon be at least partially blocked by the structure going up in left field from the view of the other cam.

Unlike some, I'd rather the Twins focus on winning the division than giving us all another reason to be less productive at work...

Posted on September 7, 2008 at 07:37 AM by Brian Highlight this comment 48

Brian, you sound like a dork. I can't believe you took the time to post an entry to ask people not to support me. This website is dedicated to the NEW ballpark. If the fans cannot see what is happening, my cousin webcam #1 does no good. I hope your newfound productivity at work can boost this economy, because right now I have no job!

-The Second Webcam

Posted on September 7, 2008 at 11:22 AM by The Second Webcam Highlight this comment 49

Ok, you're right. Sorry, this is really just Dave St. Peter and I'm too lazy to go hook up the 2nd webcam.

Posted on September 7, 2008 at 11:24 AM by Brian Highlight this comment 50

Brian (you evil taskmaster),
The Twins winning the division would make me even less productive at work than a second webcam. Although the way its looking, a second (or third)webcam will be more likely than a division championship.

Posted on September 7, 2008 at 5:02 PM by luckylager Highlight this comment 51

I stand corrected, you guys are right. Although I change my opinion; I now think the Twins are obligated to give us 10 webcams.

In all seriousness, given the coice, I'd rather have a few more nice pics each week than a second webcam. Webcam views are so limited in what they can see. Every time pics are posted you get to see things you didn't even know they were working on.

Posted on September 7, 2008 at 8:43 PM by Brian Highlight this comment 52

It's either pics or webcam. Not both. And a new webcam MUST be located ina location that will be blocked out by the structure that it will be covering. There are no other locations for a webcam than just behind the soon to be erected left field structure. A webcam INSIDE the ballpark is out of the question.

Posted on September 8, 2008 at 09:58 AM by sarcasm Highlight this comment 53

Here is a little tidbit from the Ballpark Authority August meeting.

Executive Director Dan Kenney reported the following:
• MBA and Hennepin County staff operating the HERC facility has met to discuss potential upgrades to the pedestrian realm around the facility and various operational improvements. HERC staff has been working with design students from the University of Minnesota developing plans for improvements. There is another meeting with this group next week and then Hennepin County will finalize a report that will prioritize improvements to the HERC facility.

Does anyone has any inside information on what improvements they are talking about?

Posted on September 8, 2008 at 10:16 AM by Win Twins Highlight this comment 54

Now that the State Fair is over and Delaware North was suppose to make an appearance to taste test some fair food. Does anyone know which fair food they may try to incorporate into the new Twins ballpark fair?

Posted on September 8, 2008 at 10:26 AM by I'm Hungry Highlight this comment 55

I have come to learn that Delaware North has enjoyed the walleye, hot dog, brat, corn on the cob, corn dog, hotdish, and alligator!
Also my sources have told me that the improvements to the HERC plant are very minor in that no one will even notice the changes to the HERC plant for they will be relocating in the near future. They are considering building a swimming pool.

Posted on September 8, 2008 at 11:38 AM by Dr. L Highlight this comment 56

Our J-Term 09 Final Exam Project Thesis:

ERECTING GIANT PINK CURTAINS: 'A crappy proposal to hide the HERC from the New Twins Ballpark... but what did they expect by being so cheap they passed off one of the biggest concerns for a 500 million dollar city development project to some 18 year-olds they met at a frat party.'

Posted on September 8, 2008 at 4:06 PM by UM Design Students Highlight this comment 57

New thread please, this is getting stupid again!!!

Posted on September 8, 2008 at 5:59 PM by kevin in az Highlight this comment 58

Lets get back to actually discussing the new stadium. There are a few people on here now that have ruined the intent of this website. People please be mature when posting questions and answers.

Posted on September 8, 2008 at 9:26 PM by Get Real! Highlight this comment 59

you get real

Posted on September 8, 2008 at 10:33 PM by you get real Highlight this comment 60

Oh those Vikings...They sure know how to make a guy feel bad.

Posted on September 8, 2008 at 11:57 PM by kevin in az Highlight this comment 61

no you get real

Posted on March 12, 2009 at 3:31 PM by no you get real Highlight this comment 62

This page was last modified on January 21, 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

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Up inside the circulation building. (That's the LRT platform visible through the windows.)

No, that's not Kent Hrbek. It's catcher Glenn Borgmann.

This is where chain link is being replaced with fencing which matches the plaza

If you want, you can ask those folks how the game is going -- and even get a little bit of info from the big screen (Grandstand)

Intersection overview

7:52 PM It's nearing peak, and covering the stands behind third base.

The first passengers are about to arrive, but the switch is set for the wrong track (those guys walked all the way out to correct it)

Detail showing clubhouse and home dugout (click to see the entire drawing)

One thing that the design disguises nicely is that the Pro Shop (and other key components) are actually built over lanes of freeway. That can clearly be seen here.

Night (about the 7th inning)

The media had some beautiful foliage to use as a background.

I would put on this face.

Here's the view as you step to the front of the outer moat beyond first base.

Earl Santee, principle architect for HOK Sport, presents some concepts while Mike Opat listens

The reverse angle shows that the signage will only partially obscure views from the top of the ramp. The wall is pretty high up there, so you'll need something to stand on, but it appears that this is one of the so-called "knotholes".

The entrance at Gate 3.

Looking out from under Gate 34

Photo by Jeff Ewer (Click to enlarge.)

Dude, this is NOT a multi-use facility.

Target Plaza in model form

Twins president Dave St. Peter presents his list of fan suggestions to the Ballpark Authority

Killebrew's mammoth shot on June 3, 1967 is currently memorialized on a wall at the Mall of America

The images on that wall appear to be of great Twins moments in history.

Anna keeps the riff raff under control.

With the engine behind us, we got a real sense of how fast we were going by looking out the front (back) window

Clemson Memorial Stadium

A skyway-level view down Seventh Street.

Some fun field facts. (Click to enlarge.)

Stay warm while buying tickets.

Click to enlarge greatly

A Killebrew tribute covers part of the wall where the entry doors are located near the escalators.

Actual LRT tracks are now in the street, and buses now pass over them before entering the transit hub.

Note that, even though the scoreboard appears strategically placed, it's the outfield stands which block any potential view of the field from this roof.

Circulation building with construction team on top

5:45 PM, section 327, row 9, sitting: shade.

More of a bird's-eye view of the same area.

First, an overview. The base of the plaza here will meet the base of Sixth Street at Second Avenue.


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


First Edition (1992)

Second Edition (2006)


Selected Bibliography - Surveys


Second Edition (1987)

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

(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


Book and six ballpark miniatures

Complete Bibliography

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