Metrodome demolition resumes Sunday


The demolition of the Metrodome in downtown Minneapolis starts up again on Sunday morning, with a bang.

Construction crews will use explosives to bring down what's left of the Metrodome's ring beam, six days after part of the structure collapsed out of sequence, the St. Paul Pioneer Press reports.

The explosives will be set off at 7:30 a.m., likely waking some of the neighbors with vibrations, noise and dust.

Demolition work has been on hold while the lead contractor, Golden Valley-based Mortenson Construction, investigated the cause of Monday's incident. No one was hurt and no equipment was damaged.

"After consulting with structural and demolition experts, it was determined that the safest way to bring down the remaining portion of the ring beam is with controlled explosive charges," the Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority said in a statement released Friday afternoon.

All of the debris is expected to fall within the demolition "safety zone." Still, officials don't want people getting too close to the action, and they'll set up a 250-foot safety zone around the Metrodome, the Star Tribune reports. But you can still watch it happen live Sunday morning on the Minnesota Vikings' webcam at Vikings.com.

Several roads around the dome will be closed beginning at 5:30 a.m. Sunday, including 11th Avenue, 4th, 5th, 6th Streets and Chicago Avenue (Kirby Puckett Place). They'll reopen when officials give the “all clear,” KSTP reports, probably by 9 a.m. The Downtown East Light Rail station will also close during that time.

The explosive charges used to bring down the rest of the ring beam will be similar to those used to sever the Metrodome's roof cables. The ring beam is part of the roof structure.

The Dome is being demolished to make way for the new $975 million Vikings stadium, which is being erected on the same site. The timeline calls for the Metrodome to be gone in April so construction of the new stadium can begin in the spring. The Vikings plan to play two seasons at the University of Minnesota’s TCF Bank Stadium until their new home is ready in late in the summer of 2016, according to the Pioneer Press.

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