Block E casino still a longshot, but odds are improving

A plan to develop a casino on Block E in downtown Minneapolis got new life after Mayor R.T. Rybak included it in a plan to finance a Vikings Stadium. Several business leaders are also starting to get behind the deal.
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A plan to develop a casino on Block E in downtown Minneapolis got new life after Mayor R.T. Rybak included it in a plan to finance a Vikings Stadium. Several business leaders are also starting to get behind the deal.

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Block E clears out, AMC movie theaters to close Sept. 23

Developers announced that AMC movie theaters in downtown Minneapolis' Block E will close at the end of the business day Sept. 23. The complex is nearly empty, leaving only one business afloat. Block E's owner intended to build a $400 million casino in the space, but the plan wasn't making any progress at the Capitol.

Block E owners continue push for casino

The Downtown Journal reports that a supposedly imminent deal to build a Vikings stadium does not include a downtown Minneapolis casino, but the owners of Block E say they're still committed to the idea.

Block E casino supporters tell Dayton: Help us build a casino, we'll help you build a stadium

A group lobbying to put a casino in downtown Minneapolis says they would set aside some revenue to help build a new home for the Vikings. Meanwhile NFL vice president Eric Grubman says he understands the state is struggling with its budget, but now is the time for Minnesotans to decide if it's worth keeping the team. Gruban warns that other cities are waiting to snatch the Vikings away.

Future of Block E unknown

Developers continue to insist the retail space is ideal for an urban casino in downtown Minneapolis. They told Fox 9 it could attract 5.5 million visitors and create 2,500 jobs. However, the developers are taking a gamble because this idea is only possible if lawmakers expand gaming to non-tribal casinos.

What will become of Block E in downtown Minneapolis?

The city's huge entertainment-retail complex now sits half-empty, and while the owner wants it to house a $400 million casino, the mayor says that plan isn't going anywhere at the Capitol. But there is a Plan B: Gut most of the complex and fill it with offices.

AMC Theatres on Block E loses appeal

The Eighth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals is upholding a previous ruling that the 15-screen theater doesn't have the option to extend its lease. The Star Tribune reports it's unclear whether the movie complex in downtown Minneapolis can negotiate a new lease or if it will close. Camelot LLC bought the retail space in 2010 and it's being considered a possible site for the state's first non-tribal casino.

Rybak and policy director disagree on...policy

Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak's policy director, Peter Wagenius, is running for a vacant state Senate seat and slammed stadium subsidies in a campaign statement Friday. Rybak initially opposed taxes or casinos as a stadium funding source, but has since proposed a citywide sales tax for a Vikings stadium in Minneapolis.

Warehouse fire at Hinckley’s Grand Casino

Firefighters are still looking into what caused the blaze Sunday evening. The storage and maintenance building is a complete loss. No injuries were reported and the nearby casino was never in any danger. According to WCCO, the pole barn was housing swans, which did not survive.