Morrie Lanning, a Republican representative from just about as far as you can get from the Twin Cities and still be in Minnesota, had the vapors over Mark Dayton's assessment that the Dome site is the only really viable one:
“For those who think that everything has shifted now – Metrodome is it, that’s finished, it’s a done deal. That’s not where I’m at,” said Lanning, who said the Metrodome location continued to have multiple drawbacks. “There are those who have already walked away from Arden Hills -- I have not done so.”
Apparently, Morrie hasn't figured out that he is, in fact, a minor player in the drama. You see, Morrie has virtually no skin in the game, which made him the perfect hod carrier for the bill in the first place. But now, frankly, he forgets himself.
Morrie can do all the wishin' and hopin' he wants, but a stadium in Arden Hills -- or Shakopee, for that matter -- just isn't going to happen. (Anybody who disagrees with me is free to write in a tell me how it might.) That leaves two sites in Minneapolis, and you can bet that the mayor and the city council are going to decide which one it is, if there is one at all.
Minneapolis, can on the one hand, turn the Basilica into the foyer for a new stadium. Since the city is key to assembling the land necessary for the Linden Avenue site, and since the council isn't exactly on board with the whole idea of a new stadium in the first place, a plan that requires that even more property be taken off the property tax rolls and more major infrastructure improvements, seems unlikely to fly.
Or, it can take the existing site, the Dome, and make use of all the existing infrastructure: the roads, the rail line, the utilities in the ground, all of it.
Morrie's "multiple drawbacks" all stem from the fact that the Vikings would have to play in another brand new publically-financed stadium across the river for a couple of years.
Well, boo hoo. As blogger sidekick Aaron reminded me, the Bears played in Champaign while Soldier Field was renovated; the two places are separated by about 140 miles.
Moorhead and Minneapolis are separated by quite a bit more than that.