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Study says Vikings stadium by Target Field best place

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sports Bemidji, 56619
Bemidji Minnesota P.O. Box 455 56619

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- A study commissioned by the real estate investor who envisioned Target Field on a scrubby downtown Minneapolis parking lot has concluded that the nearby Farmers Market would be the best place for a new Vikings stadium.

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The Star Tribune reported that real estate investor Bruce Lambrecht on Monday presented an analysis that found the Farmers Market site beat the Metrodome site in everything but land acquisition costs.

He said building the new stadium near the Twins' home would create a sports and entertainment district that would take advantage of the area's ample parking, transit, restaurants and bars.

In the analysis, Lambrecht and Minneapolis urban planner David Albersman compared the proposed Minneapolis sites in 10 categories. They said the Farmers Market site beat the Metrodome in nine.

"If you're going to spend a billion dollars in downtown Minneapolis, this is the place to spend the money," Albersman said.

Lambrecht owns land near the proposed site but not on it. The plan released Monday didn't include a financing proposal.

On the other hand, city planners favor the Metrodome site. Minneapolis City Council President Barbara Johnson said it was the most cost-effective, owing to years of city investments.

"It's cheaper," Johnson said. "And if people want to see this thing get done in a time-sensitive fashion, the Dome site is the place."

Ted Mondale, chair of the Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission, is expected to soon release his own analysis of possible sites, including the former munitions plant in Arden Hills pushed by Ramsey County.

"The numbers need to be scrubbed, and it's in the interest of the state and localities to do this thoroughly," he said.

A bill has been introduced at the Legislature which leaves the stadium site open to a local government partner willing to foot a third of the cost of an estimated $900 million roofed stadium. So far, no local government has volunteered.

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