42,000-seat stadium that would open in 2009 in the city's historic Warehouse District
Paying for a new ballpark has been a sticking point for past proposals, but the team and the county believe they've come up with a unique funding mechanism that will cover the project's $444 million price tag without tapping into the State of Minnesota's general fund.
Under the proposal, the Twins would contribute $125 million, including a $40 million payment up front, with the balance to be paid prior to completion of construction. Hennepin County would fund its share -- including $235 million in construction costs and approximately $84 million in site development expenses -- through a countywide sales tax increase of .15 percent, or three cents on a $20 purchase.
Though the team prefers a retractable-roof stadium, the current proposal calls for an open-air facility that is not roof-ready. The estimated $100 million expense of adding a roof could be provided by the state immediately or during the construction process, but the Twins and Hennepin County are prepared to proceed with a plan to bring outdoor baseball back to Minnesota.
Among other details in the proposal, the Twins would assume responsibility for construction-cost overruns; sign a 30-year, no-escape use agreement (subject to MLB approval), and share up to 18 percent of gross franchise sales proceeds should the Pohlad family sell the team.
Looks like a good deal all around.
Outdoor baseball in Minnesota.
Not a terrible financing deal, but I think it looks a little better at first than it actually is. Owners believe that baseball stadiums have a 30-year economic life, so the 30 year no-escape clause will end just in time for the owner to threaten to move if not given another new stadium.
People here will want to disagree, but from a purely economic standpoint, stadiums that are heavily financed with public money benefit no one other than the owners and the players. I'm sure the owners will do everything in their power to make sure that the retractable roof is publicly subsidized as well (and you can't blame them for trying).
Note: This is an economic, not a political, argument.
That said, congrats to Twins fans on getting a new stadium and ensuring that baseball will be around for at least another 30 years. I know I was more than happy to welcome a team to DC, in spite of the stadium deal.
DCNats wrote:People here will want to disagree, but from a purely economic standpoint, stadiums that are heavily financed with public money benefit no one other than the owners and the players. I'm sure the owners will do everything in their power to make sure that the retractable roof is publicly subsidized as well (and you can't blame them for trying).
True, but standard of living is what is really at stake. Will the convention center recently built in St. Paul ever recoup its costs? Or the Walker Art Museum in Minnesota renovated at millions of dollars expense to the taxpayers? No chance, but no one ever complains. Business owners in the immediate area of the stadium will most surely benefit, but admitedly citywide business as a whole will remain unchanged.
Then there are all the idiots on the street that get quoted and interviewed for their reaciton. One lady said she'll be in favor of the deal once the Twins make it so regular people can afford to go to the games. Upperdeck outfield tickets are $6. $3 on Wednesdays with a college ID. And on Tuesdays, it's half off lower deck homerun porch seats (out in left field), which comes out to $7.50. $7.50 is the cost of a movie and we know regular people cannot afford to go to the movies. Try to sit in the lower deck at another major league stadium for $7.50.
As with every announcement about a new Twins ballpark, I'll believe it when I see it.
Thank God. I hate watching games in the Metrodome. I hate indoor baseball period. But especially the Metrodome with the hefty bag. Minnesota deserves a new stadium after winning division after division in that place.