Venue News: Vikings Get a New Home, for Now

The Minnesota Vikings are heading down the road to the University of Minnesota’s TCF Bank Stadium after the collapse of the Metrodome roof last weekend. With the city, and TCF Bank Stadium, buried under a heavy blanket of snow, the Vikings traveled to Ford Field in Detroit to battle the New York Giants on Monday night. This week, they’ll be closer to home but face the tough task of playing outdoors for the first time since 1981. The stadium is just over a year old. After breaking ground in 2006, TCF Bank Stadium opened on Sept. 12, 2009…

…Oakland is moving forward with plans to build a new stadium for the Athletics to try to keep the team from possibly leaving the city. The Oakland Tribune reports that a City Council committee voted 3-1 on Tuesday in favor of funding an environmental-impact report for the proposed 39,000-seat ballpark near Jack London Square. The decision now moves on to the full council, which is expected to vote this week…

…In an unprecedented show of support for NCAA hockey, the University of Michigan and Michigan State University squared off outdoors at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbor. Michigan’s stadium, “The Big House,” seats more than 100,000 fans. The outdoor hockey game played there set an attendance record, with 113,411 fans and smashed the record set during the 2010 World Championships, which saw 77,803 fans turn out for host Germany’s game against the U.S. The crowd is also the largest ever at Michigan Stadium…

…At some point in any Houston Texans game at Reliant Stadium, Texans fan J.D. Martin will leave his seat on the stadium’s west side and walk to the nearest men’s room. He will station himself in front of the last urinal on the left and start dialing friends to discuss postgame plans and hash over how well (or not) the Texans are playing. It is, according to Martin, the only spot in Harris County’s gleaming $449 million Reliant Stadium that he’s guaranteed to get a decent cellular-phone signal. Martin may be the most ingenious fan at Reliant Stadium, but he’s not the only one in the quandary…

Glendale, AZ’s $197 million deal with Phoenix Coyotes buyer Matthew Hulsizer to keep the team at Arena is more expensive than the subsidies that court documents show former team owner Jerry Moyes requested from the city in 2008, months before he declared the team bankrupt. The Goldwater Institute urged the City Council at this week’s meeting to vote against the deal, saying it may violate the state’s gift clause. The deal with Hulsizer is also more expensive than arrangements that fell through with Chicago sports owner Jerry Reinsdorf and Ice Edge Holdings, two interested buyers, this year.

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