The Minnesota Vikings are putting the finishing touches on a brand-new — potentially lethal to birds — $1.1 billion stadium in the heart of Minneapolis that will usher in the next era for a franchise that is often trying to get far away from previous eras.
Glorious times indeed. Except for one thing, apparently. The team wants to change the name of one of the city streets running alongside the stadium site because it is "named after one of its opponents and neighboring rival."
The application — which will go before the city planning commission next week, according to the Minneapolis Star Tribune — seeks to change three blocks of Chicago Avenue around the site to "Vikings Way." It will probably be approved because the Minnesota Twins have set a precedent of doing similar things in the city and, hey, no one cares enough about something so silly to stop it. Of the 12-point criteria the city requires for renaming a street, this is the only one where the Vikings’ justification really seems like a stretch:
It is strange that this is just now becoming a problem for the Vikings. The new stadium is being built in the exact same spot of the team’s previous home, the Metrodome, where they played from 1982-2013. Chicago Avenue is named for a very large and famous city with a lot to offer this world that is not necessarily synonymous with its football team. The street has been a fixture in the downtown Minneapolis area since the 19th Century and is typically not lined with Bears fans unless it’s the one Sunday a year the Bears are in town.
5. A street name should be changed only if there will be a public benefit that clearly outweighs the public confusion and cost that would be created by the name change. Changing the name of this segment of the street to Vikings Way will be adjacent to the future US Bank Stadium where the Minnesota Vikings will play football under a 30-year lease agreement.