Mayor bids to bring soccer stadium to St. Paul under Minneapolis' nose


The mayor of St. Paul has invited Major League Soccer officials to tour an undeveloped piece of land he hopes could become home to Minnesota United's MLS franchise.

In a news release on Thursday, Mayor Chris Coleman says a stadium on property at Snelling and University avenues is "the only viable path at this point" for Minnesota.

The mayor is hoping to capitalize on the reticence of Minneapolis officials to commit to tax breaks that would allow the club, led by Loons owner Dr. Bill McGuire, to build a $150 million stadium near the downtown farmers' market.

The Pioneer Press notes that the MLS had set United a July 1 deadline to get funding sorted for a stadium in Minneapolis, but when that deadline passed with no agreement reached, attention turned to alternative locations such as St. Paul.

"There is a small window of opportunity to make sure Minnesota has a Major League Soccer team," Coleman said in the news release.

"The St. Paul site is the only viable path at this point. Not only would a stadium at this location take advantage of all modes of transportation, but it would substantially accelerate redevelopment in the area," he added.

The MLS awarded a franchise to Minnesota United, currently playing in the North American Soccer League, in March and said they would be able to enter the league in 2017 or 2018 provided they get a stadium built.

The team currently plays at the National Sports Center in Blaine, at a 9,000-capacity stadium that is not suitable for the MLS.

The Snelling site is currently a mixture of public and private ownership, with the Business Journal noting it has an area of 15 acres and includes the former Metro Transit bus barn.

The site would have good transport links, sitting next to the Green Line light rail, a rapid transit bus stop, and Interstate 94.

"A soccer stadium would anchor a complete transformation of this site into one that includes retail, housing and green space," St. Paul Area Chamber of Commerce President Matt Kramer said in the news release.

Although a downtown Minneapolis stadium was a "primary factor" in Minnesota United's bid being chosen by the MLS, deputy commissioner Mark Abbott previously said that he's not ruling out the club's relocation to St. Paul.

"We do want to come out and have a meeting with people in St. Paul to make sure we can make a fully informed decision," he said, according to NBC Pro Soccer Talk, but added: "If somebody in Minneapolis came forward with a plan that would be tremendous, because that’s what we’ve always wanted."

Next Up


First elk in more than 100 years spotted in parts of southern WI

The elk population was reintroduced to Wisconsin in recent decades.

grand marais

10 beautiful Minnesota cities to visit for outdoor adventures

These places are perfect for a day trip or a weekend getaway.

Screen Shot 2021-10-22 at 11.33.57 AM

Woman arrested after shots were fired into hotel room door in Albert Lea

The suspect was caught within minutes of fleeing the scene.

coronavirus, covid-19

Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Friday, October 22

COVID-19 hospitalizations have dropped four days in a row, but capacity remains tight.

Michael Edmund Richmond

Charges: MN man recorded himself sexually assaulting toddler

The 33-year-old man is facing decades in prison if convicted.

FLickr - minneapolis police - Tony Webster - Feb 2020 - crop

Minneapolis cop charged in crash that killed innocent man during pursuit

Charges say he was traveling nearly 90 mph when he slammed into an innocent man's vehicle.

Case Keenum

Matthew Coller: Case vs Teddy is a reminder of Vikings’ 2018 decision

Matthew Coller's work can be found daily at Purple Insider.

snow in May

It's here! Minnesota sees its first snow flurries of the season

Also, watch out for water spouts on Lake Superior.

Wikimedia Commons - COVID vaccine, pfizer, shot - Martin G

Pfizer to seek emergency use authorization to vaccinate kids ages 5 to 11

Pfizer says clinical trials have revealed positive results.