Does it make sense to sell the Metrodome to the Vikings for a dollar? According to the Star Tribune, that's what state Sens. John Marty and Linda Runbeck will propose today. The unlikely pairing of the liberal Marty and conservative Runbeck is eye-catching all by itself. It's like sending out former Presidents George W. Bush and Bill Clinton to collect money for Haiti.
The sold-for-a-dollar strategy is often used for distressed properties. Newsweek was sold for a dollar. TV Guide was sold for a dollar. There was a haunted lighthouse in Connecticut and an abandoned hospital in Ohio that sold for a dollar. Here in Minnesota, the Shubert Theater was sold to Artspace for a dollar, and now it's been reborn as the Cowles Center for Dance & the Performing Arts.
But put yourself in Zygi Wilf's shoes. When you're dreaming of a spanking new palace, would you settle for something from the Dollar Store?
I thought about the possibility of the Vikings moving and that brought up many thoughts of other sports teams moving.
The Lakers moved to LA and then we got the T-Wolves.
The Houston Oilers moved to Tennessee (and became the Titans) and they now have the Texans.
The North Stars left and now we have the Wild.
The old Senators moved to Minneapolis and became the Twins, and Washington now has the Nationals.
I am sure there are many other examples of teams leaving, but off the top of my head there are a few. It seems though that the teams leaving wasn't so much that there wasn't a market, but that the team just wanted more money or a better stadium. All the examples I can think of all had new teams fill the void eventually after the team left.
Point- if the Vikings move, within a decade a new team will come in and start another chapter in sports. Of course, new teams don't tend to do well which may just make them feel more at home in Minnesota.
I suspect most people don't care any more how this gets done. It is apparently going to get done one way or another. They just want it to stop after 10 years of threats and wasted legislative time. The dollar dome is just another method of public subsidy for a private business. The Vikings and their allies know there is poor public support for this idea if public money is involved, but they keep trying year after year.
The Vikings are like a whining dog. Eventually you give them a doggie treat just to get them to stop it.
We would have to throw in all the surrounding parking lots and space to develop hotels too.
"put yourself in Zygi Wilf's shoes. When you're dreaming of a spanking new palace, would you settle for something from the Dollar Store?"
Should we really be putting ourselves in Zygi Wilf's place? He's a multi-millionaire who wants to save $655 million of his own dollars by having the state take the bill. I'm struggling to pay my bills; I can tell you straight up that the Vikings shouldn't receive public money. Not in this economy.
When my only option is to shop at the dollar store, you don't see me running to the taxpayers asking for them to take me shopping at Pampered Chef.