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Vikings set to play at University of Minnesota
Minneapolis, MN (Sports Network) - The Minnesota Vikings and the University of Minnesota have reached an agreement for the NFL team to play at the college's TCF Bank Stadium during the construction of the franchise's new building.
The agreement is for the 2014 and 2015 seasons, but allows for use through 2017 with proper notification.
"This partnership benefits the university, its neighbors, the Vikings and all Minnesota football fans," said university president Eric Kaler. "The Vikings will remain part of the Twin Cities region during construction of their new stadium, while proceeds will be used to enhance Gopher athletics and invest in the fabric of our surrounding neighborhoods."
Final approval from the school's Board of Regents is expected Friday.
The Vikings will be able to use TCF Bank Stadium, home to the Golden Gophers, on Sundays and for one weeknight game per season when university classes are not in session. Saturday games will also be allowed when the Gophers are not playing.
"With this agreement solidified, we can now move forward on finalizing a plan that ensures the Vikings provide a great game day experience for our players, coaches and fans while having a positive impact on the university and the surrounding neighborhoods," said Vikings vice president Kevin Warren.
The Vikings will pay the university $3 million annually in compensation, including a rent of $250,000 per game and $50,000 per game for a share of concessions, advertising and sponsorship revenue.
Improvements to TCF Bank Stadium will be necessary, including the installation of new turf and a heating element for the playing surface to meet specific NFL requirements. Temporary seating in the western end zone will be added.
The Vikings will play the 2013 season at the Metrodome, their home since 1982.
A new $975 million stadium plan for the Vikings was approved by team, state and city officials last May. The team hopes to break ground near the site of the current Metrodome in October before the old building is demolished some time in early 2014.
The Vikings' new stadium is expected to be ready for the 2016 season.
05/09 19:23:38 ET