It's been about seven months since the MetroDome's inflated roof collapsed under the weight of a major snow storm. The Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission ruled it would need to be replaced rather than repaired. Work on installing the new roof panels began in late April and was to be completed by August 1st, a total of 74 days.
The new roof was inflated for the first time yesterday (7/13/11), three weeks ahead of schedule.
The Vikings' lease at the MetroDome expires at the end of the 2011 season and the team is looking to move out of downtown Minneapolis to Ramsey county suburb Arden Hills, potentially drawing to a close 30 years of football in Minneapolis.
Another proposal would require the Vikings to play at the Gopher's TCF Stadium for three years while the MetroDome site is renovated at a much cheaper cost than building a new stadium on the state's largest Superfund site.
Proposals for a new football stadium are still awaiting approval from the legislature, as both plans require taxpayer monies, who have currently shut down the state of Minnesota to "fix" budget problems.
No word yet on potential corporate sponsorships (but you know there will be one).
Anyway, a photographic synopsis follows below.
This is what the roof looked like before. Photograph courtesy of Bill Cobb.
After the collapse. Original post.
April 27th, the day roof installation began. Original post.
This is the new roof.
© Benjamin Pecka 2011. All rights reserved. Do not use without permission.