Minnesota United has given eager fans their first glimpse at designs for its new 20,000-seat stadium in St. Paul.
Club owner Bill McGuire revealed the artist's impressions for the proposed site at Snelling-Midway at a press conference alongside St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman Wednesday afternoon.
One of the most striking aspects of the stadium is its transparent exterior, which can change color thanks to LED lighting used in a similar way to Bayern Munich's world-renowned stadium "The Allianz Arena."
This exterior is made from a polymer mesh, McGuire explained, which will keep out the elements but also has "the ability to allow the light to shine through it."
McGuire described the design by acclaimed stadium architects Populous as being "elegant, descriptive of the sport and forward looking, the kind of things that soccer is all about around the world."
The field is uncovered, with the roof canopy extending as far as to keep spectators dry. It's designed in a way that games will have an intimate feel and an "intimidating atmosphere," with no seat will be more than 125 feet away from the action and a safe space for standing fans.
The cost of the stadium has increased, having initially been estimated at $120 million but now expected to cost $150 million, which will be paid for by the team and then passed into public ownership.
If approved it would become Minnesota United's Major League Soccer home in 2018, with the club – currently based at the National Sports Center in Blaine – possibly entering the premier U.S. soccer league a year earlier, playing at either TCF Bank Stadium or Target Field.
The stadium is expected to be accompanied by a wider redevelopment of the Snelling-Midway area, plans for which were released last week.
Here are some more pictures of the stadium:
More details about the stadium
Minnesota United said the stadium is designed with LED lighting through, contributing to what it says is an "elegant 'flow' design concept" inspired by the waters of Minnesota.
It will also include
- Three hospitality clubs
- A variety of suites, club seats, loge boxes and general seating.
- Complete 360-degree canopy over the bowl, which reduces light and noise from spilling into the neighborhood.
- Field heating system similar to TCF Bank Stadium and Target Field
- Distributed Antenna System for enhanced cell phone coverage
- High-Density WiFi for mobile device coverage
- 1,600 Square foot retail store
- Sustainably designed to minimize environmental impact and energy usage
The initial reaction on social media has been overwhelmingly positive: