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PROJECT UPDATE: New Vikings Stadium (Minnesota Multipurpose Stadium)

So what does over $1 billion in construction look like? This.

Yes, those are a considerable amount cranes that you are viewing in a single picture. Just how many cranes to be accurate (for fun of course)? Five towers cranes that have the capability to reach 300 feet... not that we're counting or anything. But there's another crane on site, one that should not be overlooked or actually one that really can't be overlooked. It's just too big.

Meet the Terex CC6800, a mega crane that was delivered to Minnesota last month for the new Vikings Stadium construction. It's a huge crane and it's the one that you're seeing in the middle of the site in the picture below. Oh no! What you may have mistaken as a set of trusses for the new stadium is in fact a movable crane that is the world's third largest and also a crane capable of reaching heights of 400 feet. Now that's truly amazing... or mind blowing... or actually both.

Now that you're starting to get a glimpse of just how many cranes there are at this site you might agree with us that this end of Minneapolis is starting to resemble a "mini Dubai" in a way. Key word being "mini" and something that we're definitely not complaining about. Here's a another glimpse at just what all these cranes look like. So. Many. Cranes.

So what about the building that all these cranes are building? Oh yeah, that's the over $1 billion Minnesota Vikings Stadium that will be ready for the 2016 season. For those who don't know a considerable amount about this project, it's a big one and it's one you might need to take notes on. That's really just how vast it is between its design and its amenities.

Image of the new stadium provided by HKS Architects.

Covering over 1,750,000 square feet of space this will be one of the largest and most expensive stadiums constructed in the United States, let alone the world. The project will have 65,400 seats that can be expandable to over 75,000 in the future. The overall structure will be about 320 feet tall. That's as tall as a 30 story skyscraper.

Within the building there will be 2 team retail stores, 1 full service restaurant and 460 concession stands (336 of those being in permanent spaces) ensuring your favorite hotdog and beer is never more than a few steps away. If you're concerned about navigating this huge space, don't worry. You'll have 44 ways to ascend to the next seven levels of amenities and seating with the 11 elevators and 33 escalators that will be included within the building.

So what exactly are some statistics about the physical building that is very unique in its design. Well, It's being developed on 38 acres of land and is strictly "Minnesotan" when it comes to the design. Architectural firm HKS Architects designed the stadium to accomplish five things:

Respond to Minnesota's unique climate

Modern yet economical design

Interact with Minneapolis's public space

Transparency and openness

Reflect the culture and character of Minnesota

From the outside you'll notice a largely glass structure with quite a few unique angles. The reason for this is in order to allow the most natural light within the structure and also in order to help with the immense snow loads that come with Minnesota's brutal winters. The highest point of the stadium is on the west side and it's also the side with the most windows. This side of the building is the side in which the true heart of downtown Minneapolis lies; the skyline. You'll be able to see the skyline from essentially every seat in the house truly bringing the city within. The clean lines on the exterior and the use of distinct materials are strict nodes to Minnesota's Nordic past creating a truly Minnesotan Stadium perfect for the Vikings to call home.

Image above provided by HKS Architects.

Now what's recently made big news this past week is that the Vikings have decided to contribute $49 million in order to fund additional enhancements to the project. These additional funds will help pay for air ducts at the uppermost levels and also beverage conduits. This is after the Vikings recently decided to add a few additional interior enhancements and amp up the number of TVs within the building to 2,000 and enlarge the two video boards at both end zones to 12,560 square feet.

Now some more pictures.

Structural concrete begins to reach the third level (second level of concourse space).

To the far left and near the middle huge structural steel (darker metal) have been recently installed.

In the photo above you'll notice darker steel that has been recently installed. These structural supports are absolutely enormous (larger than buses, maybe even two, in width) and will one day help support one of the largest glass roofs in the entire world. You'll also notice the angular lighter grey steel that comes down near the middle that has recently been constructed. Additional similar trusses will be installed in order to support the exterior angular facade and angular roofline within the coming months. Construction on the immense roof will begin in early 2015.

That's all we have for now. Until our next update on this extraordinary stadium enjoy this end of a day photo of a collection of trusses and cranes at the new Vikings Stadium construction site. It'll be sure to please any development lovers heart.

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