INSIDE THE VIKINGS’ $1.1 BILLION STADIUM

The $1.1 billion home for the NFL’s Minnesota Vikings, U.S. Bank Stadium, is open for its third season this fall. The SMG-managed and HKS-designed facility has plenty of mod cons, with interesting facts both big and small.

Its 1.75 million square feet is big enough to fit inside of it two Metrodomes – the team’s last building. It has 131 luxury suites – many of which are at ground level. It also has a massive dressing room for the cheerleaders and a dedicated room for the mascot, Ragnar.

Although the capacity is 66,000, and expandable to 70,000 for events like the Super Bowl, it will have a capacity in the 50,000 range for concerts. Speakers cover the ceiling, attention was given to acoustics, and there is no central scoreboard to block sightlines to the stage (officials decided, instead, for two massive endzone video screens). It also touts six club spaces, 33 escalators, 11 elevators and 979 restrooms.

The snowy climate of Minnesota is put to good use, with runoff from the roof reclaimed for use inside the stadium. Officials have pointed out that the facility will be LEED certified and is the first NFL stadium to open with LED lighting, consuming 75 percent less energy compared with traditional metal halide.