February 11, 2007
Today I'm feeling more confident that this will all work out. It doesn't take a genius to realize that what we read in the newspapers and what we hear on the airwaves is only a small part of the story. And what we've been hearing and what we've been reading so far has focused almost solely on the County and Land Partners II. Obviously, there are other entities that will benefit from a ballpark in downtown Minneapolis. And these entities definitely care about whether this ballpark is built or not. I'm sorry to be so cryptic, but you know and I know that backroom discussions are currently happening outside of the limelight.
Nothing is ever certain. As fans of Minnesota sports teams we definitely know that is true. But this deal won't fall apart until every option is explored. I've been told that "we are only in the 5th inning." That will keep me going for while.
Jeff T. writes in about his conversation with Patrick Reusse Saturday morning:
I agree with with Ruesse 100% when he states that the land owners will look bad until they let the public knows their asking price. He states that they have been offered $13.5 million by Hennepin County for their "ditch," which is public knowledge. If the public finds out that Land Partners II are actually asking $15 million and Hennepin County has turned them down, we know they are getting low-balled. However, if we find out they are asking for $30, $40 or $50 million for land currently valued at $8 million, this would (and I quote Ruesse) "expose them as no-good, despicable jack-asses." Amen to that. It's going to be an interesting couple of weeks.
And that is the $64,000 question: what is the price Land Partners II is asking for? We know the County has submitted a proposal of $13.35 million. We do not know what LPII thinks the land is worth. I think that is shady, plain and simple, and that is sugar coating it. As we all know the 2004 agreement called for cash and a land swap. $13.35 million is a generous offer for the land the ballpark will sit on, but what is the 4.97 acres of land worth that was a part of the original land swap agreement?
LPII is looking to get something for that land that they thought would be given to them as part of the agreement. Since 4.97 acres is about half the size of what the main plot is, can we reasonably assume LPII is looking for about another $7 million? Would $20 million get the job done?
Of course, this is all speculation on my part. I must admit if I find out LPII is asking for more than $20 million I will join the chorus of disgust.
However, if LPII finally comes out with a price $20 million or below, some other entities had better step up to bridge the gap. The County cannot continue to bear this burden alone, not with so much at stake. I've already mentioned the Twins, but who else will benefit from the building of this ballpark? I think we will begin to find out the answer to this question in the coming weeks.
I haven't talked about the Vikings stadium situation at all with the Twins stadium debacle dominating the news, but I have not been impressed with Zygi Wilf. More specifically, I have not been impressed with Zygi's ability to learn from past mistakes. The Twins made enough mistakes to write the definitive book on "How NOT to Build a Stadium." Zygi doesn't seem to be paying attention.
The governor's response to a possible 7 county metro-wide sales tax was laughably predictable. Ummm ... no.
And now with the Twins stadium debacle, the legislature is seriously questioning whether or not passing another stadium bill for the Vikings is a good idea.
This brings me to what I feel is the only realistic option for the Vikings if they want to fix their own stadium mess within the next 5 years: renovate the Metrodome.
I wrote about this back in October (end of post), and the option is mentioned again by Charley Walters today:
It's beginning to look as if the Vikings' next stadium will end up as a renovated Metrodome at a cost of about $500 million.
Will Zygi listen? Probably not, but it is definitely an option that should be explored at the very least. More later!
Posted by snackeru at February 11, 2007 8:10 PM
I'm glad you feel optimistic again Shane. You would have a better sense of the backroom part of this then most of us. I have to believe the Twins and memebers of the business community are not sitting idly on the sidelines while HC and LPII slug it out.
Regarding the Vikings, you nailed it on Ziggy. Has he done any research into the Twins saga at all? I couldn't believe it when they proposed the metro-wide sales tax. Floating a plan that they should have known was DOA made them look clueless.
The only chance they have for a Minneapolis site is if they can fund about 75% of the cost themselves and/or with other private money. Then, MAYBE they could get the state to chip in the other 25% via a sports memoribilia tax, a themed lottery game, an enterprise zone around the stadium, etc. The state will not be contributing anything via a sales tax or direct general fund money.
I have another idea for the Vikings. I admit it's out there, and would be unpopular with you in the Metro area. That is to approach the state of South Dakota about building a stadium off of I-90 on the Minnesota/South Dakota border just west of Sioux Falls.
Sioux Falls tried very hard to lure the Vikings training camp a few years ago and were rebuked only out of the fear that it would hurt thier stadium chances in St. Paul. I've read somewhere that Sioux Falls has the highest % of Vikings season ticketholders outside of Mpls and St. Paul. There's no doubt that this area of Vikings country is every bit as passionate about the Vikings as the Twin Cities, just a less populous one.
What are the advantages of this idea? First, I think the state of South Dakota would be a willing 'partner' for at least half the stadium funding. This would represent a once-in-a-lifetime type opportunity for them. Second, the land would be cheap and there would be no reason to add a roof. Therefore, the cost would be a fraction of the $900 million I've seen floated for a new retractable roof stadium in Mpls, and probably less even then a renovated Metrodome.
There are some obvious questions about such a crazy idea:
Could they sell out every game in this remote location? I think the could. First of all Sioux Falls area has well over 100,000 people (more then Green Bay.) Within 75 miles, which would encompass Sioux City, IA, there are 200,000 people. Second, I think most current Viking fans are willing to make longer drives if they only have to do it 10 times a year.
Would they have the necessary corporate support? This is a harder one to answer. But the Vikings would be THE hot ticket for any and all Sioux Falls coroporate support, and I don't think it's automatic that all of the current corporate customers would jump ship with this location.
Would the State of Minnesota or the NFL try to block a move to this location? This is where locating the stadium on the border is key. Technically they wouldn't be moving out of Minnesota. Arguably, this is no more of a move then a stadium in Anoka was.
Well, like I said, I know it's probably insane. But I think it's worth considering.
Posted by: David Howe at February 11, 2007 11:00 PM
First of all, I really don't care if the Vikings get their stadium. If they do, great. But no skin off my teeth if they don't. From the 80's to present, top to bottom they have been a bad organization in so many ways (funny how that correlates with moving to the Metrodome). Putting $500 million into renovating the dome makes no sense. It still is what it is..... indoor football. If they do get a handout it dang well better be towards an outdoor stadium and bringing the Vikings back to their roots as a tough, cold weather team. Atleast the two most deserving teams in the state got their stadium. I guess it would be the cherry on top if the Vikings get theirs. I'm not counting on it.
Posted by: bruce at February 12, 2007 12:06 AM
Just because the Vikings have been cursed with bad ownership and management since their move indoors does not mean they are not "worthy" of a stadium. The Vikings are the most popular sports team in this part of the upper Midwest, and put the following of Gopher football and the Twins to shame. You may not like this, Bruce, but it is the truth. Any sort of stadium solution that does not include something (whether it be a new stadium or a renovated Dome) for the Vikings is a failed solution. Yes, Zygi and the Vikes need to remove their head from their behind to make this happen.
Curt in Grand Forks
Posted by: Curt Hanson at February 12, 2007 11:52 AM
I think someone needs to clarify this notion of the tax valuation of the Land Partners property. Hennepin County's valuation of commercial property for tax purposes has little to do with the market value of the property. The county looks at what the business generates for revenue, then figures what to tax them. The actual real estate plays a very small role in this. The owners of the property are only asking for market value, what a willing buyer and seller would agree upon. The county, in it's statements regarding their inability to pay the value determined through condemnation, does not appear to be a willing buyer.
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Posted by: larry borowsky at February 12, 2007 2:44 PM
In regards to assessed value vs. market value. John D above is correct that they are very different animals but I am pretty sure the $13.5 million dollar that is being bandied about is the market value as determined by an appraiser hired by the county. It is not the assessed value used to determine property tax owed.
Posted by: Freealonzo at February 12, 2007 2:46 PM
Looks like the Twins have removed the "countdown ticker" for unveiling the ballpark plans from thier web site. Interesting.
Posted by: Jeff T. at February 12, 2007 3:15 PM
i'm jonseing for some drawings of what we're dealing with here. thanks bruce, rich and the gang!
Land flap prompts Twins to keep stadium design under wraps
BY EMILY GURNON
The Minnesota Twins today decided to postpone unveiling the design of a new downtown Minneapolis stadium, citing a dispute over the proposed ballpark site.
"Because the land deal is not done yet, we thought it would be premature to do anything," said Twins spokesman Kevin Smith.
The team was scheduled to publicly display the stadium design Thursday. A new date has not been set.
"We're ready to go," Smith said. "We're ready to pull the trigger on it. But we're waiting until the time is right."
Hennepin County officials said last week plans for the new $522 million ballpark are in jeopardy because the county hasn't closed a deal to buy the land. The site is near the Target Center.
The owners are some 150 investors in three groups: Land Partners II, Duddy Limited Partnership LLP and Minikahda Mini Storage. Hines Interests Limited in Houston is the managing partner.
The owners have said they are holding out for a fair offer.
Posted by: mullen at February 12, 2007 6:04 PM
I expect that Wilf will be moving the team. THere is not a chance the Vikings get a stadium until after the Twins stadium is built. Wilf will not wait that long. His ham handed flirtation with Anoka and his even more ham handed handling of his football operations give me little hope.
Posted by: jlichty at February 12, 2007 7:04 PM
Back to the $64,000 questions, the City of Minneapolis has an agreement to sell the one-acre plot commonly referred to as the Fuji Ya site for $2.5 million to Omni investments for their proposed Wave development. (The acre overlooks St. Anthony falls on the West side of the Mississippi between 3rd and 5th ave on 1st street. The agreement expires in March)
Feel free to disagree, but I have a hard time believing Land Partners II could get more than $2.5 million an acre for their land nestled between a garbage burner and the backside of the Target Center. If you agree, that makes the max value $25 million. A sale price of $20 million seams at the edge of what is reasonable to pay.
Frankly, I don’t care if we slightly overpay. I just want a Stadium. If it doesn’t happen, I’m burning my Twinsville shirt and joining an Twins fan refugee camp in Denver.
Posted by: BP Twin at February 12, 2007 11:16 PM
Hopefully there is something going on behind the scenes here. Otherwise, I'm starting to worry that Pogin's statement that he expects HC to drop the effort by the end of the month may be accurate. I sure hope HC isn't just planning to continue the stare-down for a couple weeks and then throw up thier hands and walk away.
I really don't understand why HC is so afraid of just going through with the condemnation. They seem to have faith that the legislature will ammend the bill to allow them to switch sites, but not have faith that they would raise the infrustructure cap in a future year if the condemnation ruling were a little high. This doesn't make any sense.
I really whish the HC commissioners would grow some balls, and tell LPII that they have until Friday to at least make a counter-offer. Otherwise, we're going through with the condemnation and doing the quick-take.
Posted by: David Howe at February 13, 2007 7:05 AM
There can only be one reason why HC is unwilling to pursue the "quick take" option; they will pay dearly for it. The market has been established by the 2004 deal, all of which was in writing. $12.95M + 4.97 acres of adjacent land. At a minimum this represents about a $20M purchase price, however, that places the same value on the 4.97 acres (on a per acre basis) as the larger LPII site. I believe that if "developed" value is taken into consideration, which is a component in the condemnation process, the roughly 5 acres when fully developed into retail and housing would be valued at much more than that. Certainly $30M isn't out of the question when considering revenue streams and other ancillary income generated by owning a large retail/entertainment/housing parcel near the stadium. That is why HC will not pursue condemnation and that is why this deal won't get done. The parties are NOT 2 or 3 million apart. They indeed are 10 to 20 million dollars apart. No amount of publicly spewed anger and frustration will close that gap. This is proven by the sellers willingness to accept the "condemned value" and HC's resistance to pursuing it.
Hines Interests, LLC are no "dummies." They've been through this before and they've been around a long time. They are prepared to walk away from this deal because they've had their own plans for developing along this corridor for quite some time and I'm sure they know how much they can make. Waiting for a housing rebound (a couple 2 or 3 years) is nothing in the grand scheme of things. They will get/make their $30M-$40M now or a 3 years from now. Time is in their favor.
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 13, 2007 8:44 AM
Shill, thanks for the well stated comment. A couple of weeks ago another commenter chimed in about this very topic (http://blog.lib.umn.edu/snackeru/greet/2007/01/10/the_other_side_of_the_story.html) and stated this precedent:
According to one Minnesota lawyer, Minnesota state law says: "Any increase or decrease in the fair market value of the property from the
project to be constructed may not be considered." Mpls-St. Paul Sanitary District v.
Fitzpatrick, 277 N.W. 394 (Minn. 1938).
Cribbed from Mark D. Savin, An Introduction to Eminent Domain Law and Practics: A Primer After the Grand Forks Flood (MSBA CLE June 5, 1997), at http://www.abanet.org/rppt/katrina/MarkSavin-INTRODUCTIONTOEMINENTDOMAIN.pdf.
In other words, the price of the land if it was developed cannot (or should not at least) be taken into account during a condemnation process. It is the value of the land today that will be considered the most.
That is how it should work anyway. But I definitely agree with the overall crux of your comment: the possibility is definitely there that the county will indeed pay dearly. And they won't let that happen.
I'm hearing more that even the chance of having to "pay dearly" is enough to cause the county to think twice about the Rapid Park site. It is easy for me to sit here and say "Come on! Take a chance! It will probably all work out," but thankfully more thoughtful individuals are taking care of this process.
Thanks again for the thought provoking comment Stadiumshill. It is worth thinking about.
Posted by: Shane at February 13, 2007 9:00 AM
Regarding the Vikings stadium, I had to laugh when I read this in the Star Trib this morning: "This week's unveiling of a detailed plan for a new Vikings stadium was postponed Monday and will not likely be rescheduled 'until we come up with some way to pay for all this,' said the executive director of the public agency orchestrating a revitalization study of downtown-east Minneapolis."
Posted by: Aaron at February 13, 2007 9:44 AM
Even if $30 million is the 'worst-case' amount that could be awarded in condemnation, doesn't the county realize that the cost of the stadium will likely go up a lot more then $17 million if they have to switch sites and delay construction at least a year? More importantly, don't the Twins realize this? It is apparent that if they don't get this resolved soon, they will not have their stadium in 2010. Losing one year of revenue in the new stadium will cost them $20 million alone. Not to mention that they will likely be asked to kick in more due to the increased cost.
It seems HC is more afraid of the uncertainty then anything. Well then the Twins need to sit down and agree to cover the land costs over a certain amount, say $17.5 million. Then HC can have financial certainty and proceed with the quick take. It's apparent that actually negotiating with LPII is probably a lost cause.
Posted by: David Howe at February 13, 2007 10:08 AM
You are correct in that any "increase or decrease" in value may not be considered as a result of the "Condemned use" i.e. the ball park. However, I'm sure Hines has plenty of backup for their "value" resulting from an appropriately zoned mixed use development.
The statute that you reference is actually a land owner protection measure in that a property cannot be devalued, if the proposed reason for condemnation is a road, or raised in value, if the reason is a stadium. But "highest and best use" that conforms to current zoning is definetly in play.
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 13, 2007 10:10 AM
uhuh, great, so, pitchers and catchers report soon. at least we can enjoy our team for a couple more seasons. thanks again rich, bruce and the gang at lp II and minikada mini storage from twins fans everywhere.
Posted by: mullen at February 13, 2007 10:30 AM
The only people to blame for this fiasco are the HC Commissioners. None of you (us) would consider tens of millions of dollars less than what we felt "our" land was worth, just to be perceived as good guys.
There were 2 grossly negligent mistakes made in this deal.
1.) Establishing too high a value in 2004, and;
2.) Failing to establish a price at which the sellers would be willing to sell prior to gaining legislative approval for a specific site in 2006.
Both of these errors fall squarely on the shoulders of our "four horsemen" Commissioners and specifically "Oputz!". If this deal unwinds, his political career deserves to "unwind" with it!
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 13, 2007 12:18 PM
The county certainly shares some blame in this, namely being naïve. But none of that explains why LPII hasn't even made a counter-offer. If you think your land is worth $30 million, at least say so and justify why you think that. Instead they are being vague and screaming that the legisation is flawed.
They wanted this stadium and championed its cause. That's one of the reasons no one demanded a purchase price agreement in advance. LPII knew that HC submitted a figure of $13 million when the infrustructure cap was being discussed the legislature. If that figure was way too low they should have said something. But they said nothing. This is not an accident. They intended to hold the land hostage and get every $ they could out of it. This is again why I think the county should just go through with the condemnation. I think a judge will see through this BS and the ruling will a lot closer to $13 million then $30.
Posted by: David Howe at February 13, 2007 12:36 PM
the only people to blame? are you serious? do you work for any of these people? the "four horsemen" as you put, stuck their asses out when nobody in this state would. unlike the parking lot owners, (are they even developers? industrial property developers?, help me out here), the commissioners faced reelection and the fire of the public and still do. the parking lot owners can continue giving and lobbying for republican causes. something in me thinks the county could convince the dfl controlled legislature to amend this thing and bypass these suddenly hiding landowners. where are they? if the bill is flawed its not for lack of trying to make it perfect by the twins and the county. this thing had to pass through the fingers of phil krinkie for godsakes.
Posted by: mullen at February 13, 2007 1:29 PM
This deal had a better chance of happening by accident than on purpose. Absent getting agreement on a sale price in advance, it is not unreasonable to expect to pay an amount at least equal to what was offered in 2004. The HC Commissioners have no excuse for not at least providing for an amount that is closer to what was offered in 2004, since they were a party to that agreement. They were not ignorant to that amount and now they're offering arguably millions less. How can they fain shock and surprise that it isn't enough?
My disdain for the "horsemen" stems from the fact that everybody knew the planets had to line up in order to pull this off, and that if successful, we were only going to get one shot (this legislation has no chance of working back through unscathed) to get this done and for that reason, doing it "half ass" is inexcusable.
Of course LP II were happy to participate in this process. They thought they were going to get at least $12.95M + 5 acres! (there was no mention of the $13.35M price in any discussion prior to January 2007).
Condemnation has proven to be as legally fair a system for taking land for public use as there is. The fact that LP II hasn't fought this process is clear indication to me that they believe whatever value is imposed as a result of this process, will be what they accept as full and final payment. The fact that HC is unwilling to pursue this means of addressing this problem also tells me that they believe their offer is substantially too low. Otherwise, they would have nothing to lose.
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 13, 2007 2:31 PM
Amen to that Mullen. People seem to forget that the bill not only had to pass through Krinkie "on the right" but also Pogemiller "on the left." This "flawed" bill barely passed the Senate 34-32, and that is with the $90 million cap on infrastructure! If they started adding things like a $200 million dollar roof, there is no way it would pass. Hindsight is 20/20.
In addition, give the so-called "Four Hourseman" credit for having the guts to call for a Hennepin-County only tax to fund the stadium. If the Legislature would have been voting on a Statewide tax, how do you think the out-state politicians would have voted? I think they would have voted "no," and the Twins would be trying to decide between Portand and Las Vegas right now.
Posted by: Jeff T. at February 13, 2007 2:39 PM
So, you're willing to give "credit" to the HC Commissioners for having the guts to impose a tax? That's like giving politicians credit for raising taxes...no wait, that's EXACTLY what that is.
I'd prefer to give them credit for acheiving results. Politicians that impose taxes are a dime a dozen. Just like politicians that make promises and then don't deliver....we evidently have a number of them also.
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 13, 2007 2:51 PM
Actually, yes. If no taxes were raised, no stadium would be built. Somebody had to step up and impose the taxes on "themselves," or (right or wrong) there is no new stadium and quite possibly no Minnesota Twins. It was Hennepin County that had the guts to do that.
Posted by: Jeff T. at February 13, 2007 2:56 PM
IF we get a stadium, then I'll agree with you. But until then, it's just another oppressive tax that they'll find some reason to keep on the books, whether or not a stadium gets built. Then what are they?
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 13, 2007 3:02 PM
Jeez, stadiumsh(r)ill started off with with pretty good insight into the whole ballpark muddle and a short 6 hours later ends up ranting unproductive anti-county screeds. Could it be that LPII or Nick Coleman is within the Greet Machine midsts?
The fact is that the County out-maneuvered everyone on this stadium deal and deserve a lot of credit for getting the deal this far. If you would have asked the so-called pundits a year ago, they would have told you that no way the legislature passes a ballpark bill, especially in an election year.
Could the legislation have been better? In hindsight yes, but when Bruce L and the boys were gladhanding everyone in sight when the ballpark was passed, basking in the glory helping it get passed, only the most cynical of critics would have guessed that they would have been so unyielding in the land sale negotiations. Were people naive? Yes. I guess we all should remember that it's all about dollars and cents not home runs and double plays.
Now the County needs to get this in the can. I am sure there are creative ways the City of Minneapolis or the Twins could contribute to the infrastructure/land price costs if they exceed $90 million. Lets hope the County is pursuing those avenues and soon enters into quick-take. The alternative is a lose-lose-lose for Twins fans, Hennepin County politicos, AND LPII.
Posted by: Freealonzo at February 13, 2007 3:26 PM
First of all, I don't write "screeds." Although I applaud your vocabularied attempt to describe my "ranting."
Secondly; I admit my contribution has taken a decidedly cynical tone towards the "Four horsemen." However, when having to chose between private, albeit capitalizing citizens or self serving, glory seeking County baby-kissers for the placement of my hard earned benefit of doubt, I'll choose the private citizens almost every time.
Whenever these types of situations come about, the first instinct is to look for the villain. In this instance, the convenient choice was LP II, as if "politicians" ever did anything to deserve being raised to sainthood in any vainglorious situation.
Blaming LP II for holding out for the best price, while all along the chief County negotiator (Opat) had every opportunity to establish a value, ANY VALUE, in advance of this legislation but failed to do so; is like blaming a thief for stealing your wallet you left on the table while your back was turned! He's a thief!, you knew he was a thief and yet you didn't put your wallet away. Now we're all supposed to feel sorry for you because your wallet got stolen?
LP II are capitalists. That's why they own the land in question. Blaming capitalists for being capitalists is pointless. Opat has nobody to blame but himself for not "putting them in a box" before now.
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 13, 2007 4:50 PM
This is not some poor farmer who's having his land condemned so the big, bad county can build a mall or a highway.
These are coniving businessmen who openly campaigned for the state to PLEASE build your stadium here. Our site is PERFECT. It will do so much good for the COMMUNITY. We WANT to sell you this land. Now that the bill is passed, suddenly we can take it or leave it. We'll let you build your stadium here, but only if you pay us 3 times what it's really worth. SUCKERS.
Posted by: David Howe at February 13, 2007 5:06 PM
City pages article states that LP II would sign for the same deal that was on the table in 2004. That's hardly coniving and is an uninflation adjusted, 3 year old value the City and County signed off on once already. So, who's changing the deal?
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 13, 2007 5:10 PM
the county isn't seeking all of the land that was part of the '04 agreement. somebody correct me if i'm wrong. and it's still offering more than it's worth. why don't your hereos at parking lots 'r' us release how much they want? what are they afraid of?
Posted by: mullen at February 13, 2007 6:04 PM
I think $18-20 million would be a fair price. If Hennepin County refuses to agree at a settlement in this range, I say shame on them. The only issue is how much does LPII actually want? Why don't they throw out a number so they can atleast negotiate?
Posted by: Bruce at February 13, 2007 6:33 PM
I'm still hung up on this point:
Stadiumshill: But "highest and best use" that conforms to current zoning is definetly in play.
Wouldn't the present appraised value of $8 million (according to Opat) conform to the current zoning?
If LPII's best-case scenario is a judge setting the land value based on a land-swap agreement that expired over two years ago, that doesn't seem to bode too well for them.
Posted by: spycake at February 13, 2007 6:40 PM
This is a good point. The arguement that the assessed tax value is meaningless is not true.
Are the tax assessments lower then the FMV? Yes. Even 50% lower? Probably. This would put the value at $12 million. Could it even be worth double the assessed value? MAYBE. This would put it at $16 million.
But is worth 3 to 6 times the assessed value as LPII is appearantly claiming? NO.
All the more reason for the County to grow some balls and move ahead on the condemnation.
Posted by: David Howe at February 13, 2007 6:58 PM
Mullen - The County is seeking ALL of the land that was part of the 2004 deal and is offering less.
Mullen/Bruce - LP II has agreed to accept whatever number the condemnation proceedings come up with. It's not necessary for them to "throw a number out there" because that would frame the condemnation process. If HC is willing and able to pay more, why don't they just raise their offer in million dollar increments until LP II says "okay." Then they'll have their number. It doesn't take rocket science to figure that out.
Spycake - Assessed value for tax purposes has nothing to do with market value. If I own 80 acres of farm land; its assessed value is based on that utilization. If I carve it up into (80) one acre lots and build houses on each lot, it's value goes up considerably. In condemnation proceedings, even if I'm farming that land, I can claim lost revenue from having it condemned (and taken away) before I could develop it and argue for more money. LP II's land is zoned HD residential, even though it's being used as a parking lot, it's "highest and best use" that conforms to the current zoning is HD residential.
And; land never goes down in value. Even in this soft residential market, go try and buy a lot for less than it was for sale a couple of year ago. All the land swap agreement did was establish a value 2 years ago. A modest 10% annual increase would be easily defensible. Again, that's why HC refuses to follow through on their condemnation threat and LP II welcomes it with open arms, they both know it would "bode very well" for LP II.
Howe - The reason HC has "no balls" in your opinion, is because you are wrong. If HC believed it could get the land for less than $20M through a "quick-take" proceeding, this would be done by now. The truth is, they know they can't. There is no other reason for balking on this threat. They don't like the negative pub and they can't afford the lost time this jockeying is taking.
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 13, 2007 7:14 PM
Any response to BP Twin's post earlier, which brought up a current 1 acre, $2.5 million deal for a new riverfront development? (Click on my name for a news link.) That's probably a better guidepost for current downtown land value than an expired 3-year-old land-swap deal, no? And since the ballpark property is hardly riverfront quality, $20 million seems more like the high end in current valuation.
I fully understand that LPII is playing hardball by not negotiating and going to court to get more than $13 mil, but couldn't the county also be playing hardball in the court of public opinion? If they paint a negative picture of LPII (like what you're doing to the commissioners here) and play up the "save the Twins" loyalist card, I don't think a favorable Harry Crump-style court judgment is out of the question. They might save a few million for themselves (or for the Twins) on the eventual purchase price, or at the very least, get better/speedier treatment from the legislature if they want their infrastructure cap loosened in the future.
I just don't buy your argument that the commission has acted stupidly. They didn't forget to buy the land, nor was it an oversight -- it just didn't make any sense to buy the land until last September or so (whenever the deal was made official after the hearings). And since then, perhaps since the 2004 agreement expired, LPII hasn't been a willing partner in negotiation (it takes two to tango). Right now, there is NOTHING the commission can do other than A) start raising their offer in the vain hope they will eventually meet LPII's mystery demands or B) proceed with the condemnation process while publicly positioning themselves in a positive light. Option "A" sounds a lot stupider [sic] than Option "B".
Posted by: spycake at February 13, 2007 8:07 PM
i just wanted to say that a lot of my response is out of frustration and impatience after waiting soooo long for this to finally happen. i'm just a twins fan who wants the team to have a long-term future here. i think everybody here wants the same thing too. Here's hoping a consensus can be reached and we can get on to the fun, yes fun, of building a ballpark. i'm not going to complain anymore, just sit back and trust in these smart, able people on both sides to work to reach a solution. i appreciate the education on this particular issue that this blog has brought.
Posted by: mullen at February 13, 2007 8:40 PM
Spycake - Certainly we can disagree for until this issue meets a resolution, it's all speculation. But, I never suggested that a purchase of the LP II site take place in advance, just a simple "option agreement" or "price commitment" in advance of this point obviously would've been prudent. Establishing a price at which a seller will sell, very early in any real estate transaction, is "real estate 101". Any first year realtor knows this, let alone sophisticated negotiators charged with the public trust for hundreds of millions of dollars.
And if this works out like Hines and LP II plan, they'll take their millions and use part of it to buy a better public opinion. To paraphrase; "being held in high esteem in the court of public opinion, does not buy me a rolex."
My whole point with this topic was to attempt to redirect what I felt was a little over emphasis on LP II with too much credit given to Oputz and HC. I don't trust politicians as far as I can throw them, and if you really wanted some wigged out conspiracy crap; what if HC was intentionally lowballing this deal in an effort to get it to implode, thus being able to blame it on LP II and save face from being blamed for pursuing a substandard facility on a postage stamp lot in the first place? now that's some weird s#@*!
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 13, 2007 9:17 PM
By the way, I just wanted you all to know that I own a small house in the Como Park neighborhood. One block from the lake, in fact. It's been assessed at $250,000, but it would be very valuable if you built an amusement park in the back yard. I will sell it to you for $1.5 million. Please let me know if you are interested.
Posted by: Jeff T. at February 13, 2007 9:34 PM
Regardless of how greedy and shady LPII is being (and I think they are), if this deal does implode, I will blame the Twins.
In the last 10 years there have been many sites, many landowners and many government 'partners.' Now they finally have a stadium bill passed and there is an impass over an amount of at most $20 million dollars. If they don't help find a way to resolve it, it will be thier own fault.
Posted by: David Howe at February 13, 2007 9:52 PM
This is why all the public's venom and animosity should be directed towards our inept public officials and specifically "Oputz."
Per todays story in the Star & Trib;
"Reacting to criticism from taxpayers that the county did not move quickly enough to reach a land sale, Opat said the county had to first hold public hearings in August and then take a final vote on authorizing the 0.15 percent sales tax. Then, he said, more time was needed to conduct environmental reviews of the property and hire an outside appraiser."
This statement by "Oputz" is blatantly false! The County was party to an agreement on price, with the City, in 2004! There is NO REASON a similar agreement couldn't have been reached in advance of the current legislation unless it was "Oputz's" intention all along to lowball LP II!
"Oputz" is an irresponsible, two-timing, bald faced liar and an incompetent buffoon. The fact that he expects us citizens to eat this crap he's dishing out, is insulting! As long as he continues to deny the error of his ways, he should lose all credibility in this process.
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 14, 2007 8:06 AM
ok dude, i think you're going over the line. you've obviously got an ax to grind and are a republican shill, not a stadium shill. why don't you take it down a notch. if you're involved with the landowners, fine, but i for one don't need to read your personal political opinion.
Posted by: mullen at February 14, 2007 8:24 AM
Agreed. Shill, you don't have to like Mike Opatz, but you clearly have some personal problem with him. If you're in favor of this stadium, you can't possibly hate him as much as you seem to. He put is neck on the line and stepped forward when no other politician in this whole state would. For that reason, he has my respect, even if the legislation wasn't perfect.
Posted by: David Howe at February 14, 2007 8:32 AM
Fine - I may have been a little "over the top" but anybody with half a brain and a casual interest in this saga, saw this coming from a mile away. You either negotiate an option on the land upfront, or you remove any "site specific" language in the legislation, or; absent accomplishing either one of those, admit you screwed up and apologize.
By the way - by definition, how does begging for truth, transparency and accountability in politics make me a republican? I'm really more of a libertarian or Jeffersonian in my political "leanings."
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 14, 2007 8:40 AM
I've worked as a real estate appraiser. I've never done much fieldwork in Hennepin, but I have done quite a bit in Washington and Dakota.
I can tell you that county assessed values are generally 25% lower than market value, and the disparity tends to increase with complexity of property.
Posted by: Trent at February 14, 2007 9:14 AM
Just got done uncovering this little tid bit for all you LP II haters;
Have any of you heard of "Fiduciary Responsibility?" If not, that's a term used to define the responsibility of those charged with protecting the interests of minority investors. i.e., if you own stock - Fiduciary Responsibility is whats supposed to ensure your best interests (money) are protected.
LP II may not WANT eminent domain proceedings however, they NEED eminent domain proceedings in order to protect the principles from being sued for accepting too little.
If the value of the site is determined through condemnation proceedings, the value received is defensible. If, however, the price is subjectively agreed to by the controlling partners of LP II, they're open to lawsuits from any current investor who was led to believe more was coming!
Think about that! Some grandma in Houston who 3 years ago was told she was going to receive 30k for her share of LP II, now only receives 15k 3 years later, gets pissed off and sues the managing partners for the difference? now take that scenario times the 100 independent investors in LP II and you start to understand why eminent domain is a crucial component to this process.
It's unfortunate that HC isn't more confident in the outcome of this process, because from a legal standpoint, it's absolutely necessary.
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 14, 2007 11:47 AM
just got done uncovering that, eh? straight from the files of your clients? yep, we're just all LP II haters, for sure! (commence eye rolling) i could really give a rip and just want to see outdoor baseball. if it doesn't happen, oh well, life goes on.
Posted by: mullen at February 14, 2007 1:10 PM
Dave St. Peter on KFAN right now! 1:15p 2/14/07
Posted by: Freealonzo at February 14, 2007 1:14 PM
You are putting up some great thoughts, but I'm having a hard time consolidating these two ideas thru this thread:
1. The land is assessed at $8mm and typically land sells for 25% more than assessed value.
2. The previous 'agreement' (which was never signed) had a land swap portion of the deal.
When a assessor, or arbitrator looks at the value of the land, I don't think they can consider a previous "agreement" that falls thru. What happened if LPII backed out of the deal, what happened if ... who knows they find an indian burial ground beneath the site and the deal falls thru. Or if the stadium bill is defeated. That agreement never happened. You cannot use it to accurately set a value to land. The Guthrie, the Schubert, Deja Vu, or any other developer/owner cannot use that "agreement" as a way to set a value to their land... I don't see how legally LPII can.
I can see where in their minds it sets a value, but to an assessor it can't.
Or is that wrong? I am not a lawyer, and I don't know property laws, but it just doesn't seem right that an agreement that was never legally executed can be used to assess a straight value on a piece of property. It is a 10 acre site that cars are parked on. And I don't know if anything else can be considered.
Posted by: Drake33 at February 14, 2007 1:20 PM
1.) There is no such thing as "typical" in condemnation proceedings. People have to remember what this process is; it's government stripping private property owners of their rights and opportunities for the supposed "greater good." Recent court decisions take this affront on private citizens constitutional rights very seriously and have swung to compensating them "handsomely" for this.
This remains the single largest reason why HC has a very real fear of pursuing this. Recent eminent domain proceeding have resulted in awards that approach several times assessed values. It's not about time, it's about the real uncertainty (read "probability") that the value through this process would be several million dollars more than what HC is offering.
Remember, LP II has invited this process. They WANT these proceedings. HC does not. That should tell you whos favor this process is geared towards.
2.) You are absolutely correct in that an unconsummated deal does not affect the "assessed" value. The agreement was signed and executed, however contingent upon certain legislation that failed in 2004/2005. The rub here is that a Judge and arbitration commitee would have a hard time ignoring a value that was agreed upon by 2/3rds of the parties that were party to an executed previous agreement. The argument being; You thought the property was worth this price in 2004, you were willing to perform at that price in 2004 (albeit subject to certain legislation), "what now has changed?"
Having less money or unforeseen costs are not issues of the seller. These proceedings are designed to protect or properly compensate private citizens for lost opportunity. They are not mechanisms deployed to take advantage of private citizens to arbitrarily take land.
Condemnation proceedings are a court ordered process to determine fair market value. I would bet Hines Interests LLC has gone through several of these, in various city's, over the number of years they've been around. Them stading pat and saying "bring it!" scares the bejeebers out of HC, and it probably should.
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 14, 2007 1:55 PM
Do you care to address the current $2.5 million per acre price for a riverfront site, and how that affects the potential Rapid Park value? Or the 25% adjustment figure provided by Trent above?
I appreciate some of your points, but addressing these two questions would be a lot more constructive than simply repeating "Oputz." You seem to have some knowledge about the situation, but given the facts and questions you ignore, plus your ad nauseam namecalling, you're not showing much impartiality at all. Which makes your general arguments that much harder to believe.
Posted by: spycake at February 14, 2007 2:02 PM
1.) Any comparison of property values would have to be "apples to apples." A 1 acre site vs. an 8 acre contiguous site wouldn't fit (although I'd bet the lawyers for LP II/Hines might use the resultant $20M as a starting point).
There is just so much you can do with a site that is 1/8th the size of the subject property. I can't definitively say it has no bearing, but like I said; after identifying it as a "starting point" there isn't really any thing else there.
2.) I think I addressed the 25% "adjustment" argument in my previous post - just to be more succinct. There is no formula for determining value. There are "rules of thumb" for appraisers and determining approximate value of "like" properties, but absent another 8 acre, HD resi zoned parcel recently sold and closed in the city of Mpls, the value would be closer to "whatever you can get."
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 14, 2007 2:15 PM
Here is the part that I don't understand. What is the Rapid Park site worth if the ballpark falls through? If this was 2003, I would say that the area is perfect for condos and all of the development that goes with them. However, this is 2007 and the downtown Minneapolis condo market seems to be saturated. If I was a business owner in the Warehouse District or Block E I'd be freaking out about this. More condos and retail that you can already find in Maple Grove and Woodbury are not going to bring people downtown. A ballpark will, however.
Posted by: Jeff T. at February 14, 2007 2:16 PM
The 2004 agreement has some fundamental differences from the current situation. Not only was Hennepin County not the actual buyer (it was the City of Minneapolis, who was contributing $7 million, according to the link on my name), but additionally, Hennepin County didn't even control most of the land involved in the "land swap" -- that was largely a contribution from the City of Minneapolis and the state (via MnDOT). It will probably be brought up, and may have some impact, but there is some legitimate doubt that it constitutes gospel.
Recent eminent domain proceeding have resulted in awards that approach several times assessed values
Citations? Specifically in situations similar to this (price, purpose, location)?
it's about the real uncertainty (read "probability") that the value through this process would be several million dollars more than what HC is offering.
Several million dollars doesn't necessarily break the deal for HC. However, it's still in their best interest to keep those millions to a minimum, even just to minimize the extra costs the Twins may eventually help cover, or to grease the wheels for a legislative amendment to their infrastructure cap.
Remember, LP II has invited this process. They WANT these proceedings. HC does not. That should tell you whos favor this process is geared towards
Again, how do you know this? Both sides are posturing right now -- you'd be a fool to read that much into public comments, especially given your noted distrust of politicians.
Posted by: spycake at February 14, 2007 2:23 PM
Well, HC has publicly said they don't want to pursue Condemnation. The fact that they started the process and have failed to continue it is evidence that they don't want it. Otherwise, this part of the drama would be over by now.
LP II/Hines had the opportunity to fight the Condemnation proceedings in front of Judge Aldrich;
they didn't. If they were nervous about the outcome, this would've been the forum to dispute "eminent domain."
While I won't detail every example of eminent domain resulting in a windfall for private property owners, here's a link;
That should help you understand the ominous side of this undertaking. Believe me, you want eminent domain to be a hard and expensive process. What other protection do you have of your private property rights?
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 14, 2007 2:41 PM
Well, HC has publicly said they don't want to pursue Condemnation.
Now you take politicians at their word, eh? They may not WANT to do it, but that hardly means they're opposed to it, or that they fear it. In fact, given that they haven't negotiated a land deal since the 2004 city option expired, it's quite possible that they've been planning to go through this process for some time.
The fact that they started the process and have failed to continue it is evidence that they don't want it
I'm a little confused by this -- they haven't actually bailed on condemnation, correct? Perhaps they are just extending their negotiating period, and more importantly building a case to save them (and/or the Twins) money in condemnation proceedings.
Believe me, I'm glad such eminent domain protections exist, but in this specific case, even if you double the assessed value, it's still only $16 million, which certainly shouldn't break the bank. Even 2.5-3 times the assessed value is $20-$24 million, which honestly shouldn't be that hard to make up the difference with the Twins or via legislative amendment. Could the judgment come out higher still? Sure, anything's possible, but is it very likely, given the facts that we know?
Again, I ask: what would you suggest the county do right now? Adjusting their offer at all seems rather stupid at this point when LPII hasn't yet made a counter-offer, and it probably doesn't hurt to publicly posture (and consult the Twins and/or legislature) before heading into condemnation hearings.
Posted by: spycake at February 14, 2007 3:13 PM
I think it's been pretty well established that the County doesn't want to enter into condemnation for fear of what the price could be. They have authorization from a judge to do so (he ruled the taking the property would serve a public purpose). A lot of people, including most commenters on this blog, think the County is being too careful, avoiding the possibility of a large judgement at the expsense of missing out on what is really important here: building a Twins ballpark.
It is quite obvious that stadiumshill is close to LPII and in fact may be Bruce L. I have heard Bruce talk in the past about the little old lady from Houston who has entrusted him with her retirement fund and is looking for a nice pay day. However should the County, and by extension taxpayers, have to pay a premium because LPII overhyped its investment opportunity?
Stadiumshill is correct, each property valuation is different and it's hard to find a good apples-to-apples comparison. However, the 25 percent over appraised value standard is a good rule of thumb. Some judgements are lower, some are higher, but there are very few outliers. So it is just as unlikely that a judgement for $5 mil would come as there is for a $40 million judgement. The County should get off the pot, enter into quick take and figure out what to do about the cost next year.
btw, Mike Opat, if you're reading this I realize your strong desire to somehow revitalize the Brookdale Mall. But a Twins ballpark is an absolute non-starter for that location. If that was a trial balloon, consider it shot down.
Posted by: Freealonzo at February 14, 2007 3:22 PM
It is interesting that you bring up the topic of "fiduciary responsibility." The way you presented it is not entirely correct.
A limited partnership is managed by a general partner, who has fidiciary duties to the limited partnership, not just the minority investors. Furthermore, the general partner satisfies those duties by meeting the duty of loyalty and the duty of care. The duty of loyalty is met by not acting in a competitive manner with the limited partnership. The duty of care is met as long as the general partner refrains from engaging in grossly negligent or reckless conduct, intentional misconduct, or a knowing violation of the law. As long as none of that "bad conduct" occurs, a judge will not question actions taken by the general partner of the limited partnership.
The general partner of LP II could decide that not going through eminent domain proceeds was in the limited partnership's best interests for a number of reasons (i.e. negative publicity could hurt its ability to find buyers for its future development in the area, it could think that LP II would make more with a ballpark on that spot than without, LP II might be concerned about losing the ballpark on that spot, etc.). Any of those reasons for not holding out for eminent domain proceedings would likely be upheld in court in the event that a minority investor sued LP II because such a decision would not fail the duties of loyalty and care. In particular, courts are hesistant to question the business judgment of the management of a business entity (commonly known as the business judgment rule).
As an aside, Minnesota has a corporate statute that allows a board of directors of a company to consider the interests of the community, state, and society (and others), in addition to just the interests of the corporation. While it may not directly apply to a limited partnership, it might still be considered by a judge if LP II was sued by a minority investor for settling on a price with HC rather than requiring eminent domain proceedings.
In summary, you are incorrect in stating that those in charge of LP II "NEED eminent domain proceedings in order to protect the principles from being sued for accepting too little" or that "from a legal standpoint," the eminent domain process is "absolutely necessary."
In reality, LP II could get sued by a disgruntled investor whether it goes through eminent domain proceedings or not. However, LP II will not be liable if it meets its fiduciary duties, and meeting those duties is not just limited to holding out for the eminent domain process, as you insist.
Posted by: The Rational Actor at February 14, 2007 3:26 PM
Consistent with my previous posts, I don't believe one thing HC says. ACTIONS speak louder than words and their failure to proceed with "eminent domain" is proof they don't want it.
The only action that remains for this act to become "official" is physically taking title to the property. It would be an uncontested act by LP II/Hines. But rather than do that, they decide to publicly him and haw about how unfair LP II/Hines is being? getting egg all over their collective faces and dealing with the PR nightmare that's currently ensuing?
We know HC threatened to use eminent domain, up to and including starting the process in the courts. Now that LP II/Hines didn't flinch, HC fails to follow through? why? why deal with delaying and squelching all the enthusiasm, jeopardizing the time table? If HC was going to follow through with eminent domain, they would've done it by now. There is no reason for pause.
As for what do I think HC should do? either follow through with eminent domain (which they won't) or start raising their offer till LP II/Hines say's "okay." And if the price jeopardizes the stadium? then go back to the legislature with their tail between their legs, begging for more money. That's all they can do.
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 14, 2007 3:29 PM
Rational - All the defense points you raised would only be argued in court (i.e. after being sued). That is what LP II is trying to avoid.
While they certainly could be sued even after eminent domain, the likely hood of success would be greatly diminished if one court is faced with the prospect of imposing a financial penalty on persons who were forcefully compelled to comply with and accept a certain amount.
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 14, 2007 3:37 PM
Was LP II's investment opportunity overhyped, underhyped or properly hyped? Eminent Domain would provide an answer to that question.
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 14, 2007 4:03 PM
If all of this posturing is being done so that LP II can avoid getting sued by minority investors, then "the likely hood of success" should not factor into it (as LP II would likely win in most scenarios for the reasons I noted in my previous post). LP II could be sued for any number of reasons, many of which are as likely (or unlikely) as getting sued for not pursuing eminent domain.
For instance, if HC tells LP II to go take a hike, then a minority investor could sue them for not taking the offer (particularly, if LP II's later development flops).
An investor could sue LP II and claim that without the ballpark, not only did LP II not get money from HC, but that LP II's surrounding development also lost a premium that would have come with being located in a one-of-a-kind location (next to a new ballpark).
An investor could sue if eminent domain proceedings occur and the result is less favorable than what they may have received by settling (i.e. it comes back at $15 million and they might have been able to settle at $20 million). Additionally, the investor could sue due to the additional delay in receiving the money as a result of the long eminent domain process.
I guess the bottom line is that LP II can get sued for any number of reasons, and in virtually all scenarios they would appear to be in a great position to win. Subjecting itself to the negative publicity onslaught merely in hopes of avoiding a suit from a minority investor that LP II would likely win seems very irresponsible and irrational on LP II's part.
Posted by: The Rational Actor at February 14, 2007 4:13 PM
Eminent Domain insulates LP II from subjective scrutiny regarding value. The risk of the outcome through condemnation coming in less than the offer that's currrently on the table, is small.
If HC walks on the deal, then LP II defers to its Partner (Hines) as the development/value/negotiating expert, again further providing plausible defense for that outcome. Also, there would be no basis for a lawsuit at that point, because there would be no quantified damages until HC's offer would be compared to the actual return of the future development or; the managing partners of LP II could buy out the dissenting investor for whatever share the "lowball" HC offer would've returned to the investor.
Negative publicity is a non-factor. If/when this issue gets settled, it'll be forgotten.
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 14, 2007 4:31 PM
In an earlier post you wrote "Recent court decisions take this affront on private citizens constitutional rights very seriously and have swung to compensating them "handsomely" for this."
I think you have lost sight of the intended 'spirit' of eminenant domain laws. They are intended first and foremost to proctect INDIVIDUALS from having thier land taken AGAINST THIER WILL by the government without ensuring they have received adequate compensation.
LPII is not a poor defenseless individual, it is a group of wealthy investors. Most importantly, this land is not being taken against thier will. On the contrary, they openly LOBBIED for thier land to taken for this exact purpose.
LPII still deserves to recieve fair compensation for thier property. But if you think a judge is going to start exponentially increasing the award to "handsomely" compensate LPII for the "affront" to thier constitutional rights, you're mistaken. This is hardly an affront, they ASKED for this stadium to be built on thier land. No judge worth a darn will feel the least bit of sympathy for them.
Posted by: David Howe at February 14, 2007 5:40 PM
I appreciate your distinction. Unfortunately there isn't one, in the courts eyes. Private property rights extend to corporations the same as individuals. What you're attmepting to address is "court sympathies" and this process in particular, goes to great lengths to avert having that impact a decision.
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 14, 2007 6:02 PM
The Baseball stadium will NEVER be built. I told you this last Spring.
Posted by: mark at February 14, 2007 6:09 PM
I disagree. You can't know what will effect things in the "court's eyes" you are not the Judge.
This eminant domain case is indeed unique in many ways. One of the ways it is unique is that not only were the land owners previously agreeable to the taking of the land, but indeed they openly campaigned for it. How often in eminant domain cases is this the case? It would seem only reasonable that this will factor into the judge's ruling.
Posted by: David Howe at February 14, 2007 6:10 PM
You're obviously frustrated.
First of all; the "Judge" doesn't decide the case, he presides OVER the case and the legal proceedings, so while he's supposed to be impartial, it doesn't matter what he thinks.
What will happen, if it goes this far, is; the sellers appoint a person, the County appoints a person and the Court appoints an appraiser. The 3 of these individuals convene to agree on a price. If they do, then the Judge awards that amount, if they can't agree, then it goes to a jury trial and if neither party likes the outcome of this event, it gets appealed and starts all over again.
Too bad it's not as simple as a "Judge" seeing through a capitalizing seller.
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 14, 2007 7:01 PM
yea, twins fans throughout the upper midwest are frustrated. it all sucks.....at least we have pitchers and catchers reporting. i'm gonna just try and enjoy, for however long, one of the best young lineups in the majors, playing in my town.
Posted by: mullen at February 14, 2007 8:29 PM
Does anyone know what Dave St Peter said on Kfan today?
Posted by: MOJO at February 14, 2007 11:55 PM
Posted by: DaMan at February 15, 2007 7:09 AM
Do you have the names of the Land Partners II shareholders?
Posted by: rmarschke at February 15, 2007 8:57 AM
Re: Dave St. Peter on KFAN. You can hear the interview at KFAN.com.
I heard bits and pieces. What I heard was that
1) Twins are confident the site is be enough for a great, modern ballpark.
2) The garbage burner won't negatively impact the fan experience.
3) The Twins realize there may be some "punchlist" items they will have to pay for but the Twins don't have an open checkbook.
Posted by: Freealonzo at February 15, 2007 9:31 AM
Shane.....I watched your Nintendo Wii video and decided I needed one. I have feeling that once I recieve it my 17 visits per day to your site might be cut back to 13.
Keep up the good work!!
Posted by: MOJO at February 15, 2007 10:01 AM
This item was in Sid's column today, for what it's worth.
"It's interesting that the land near Target Center that is expected to be the site of the Twins' new stadium was advertised for $17.5 million on the owners' website but now is carrying a $40 million asking price."
Posted by: mullen at February 15, 2007 10:16 AM
Sorry for the lack of updates everyone. I was planning of writing something last night, but I have come down with a sickness that has just wiped me out. So, I'm at home sleeping.
Thanks to everyone for writing in and sharing your thoughts. I have learned a lot through the comments to this post. I hope to up and writing again soon.
Posted by: Shane at February 15, 2007 10:24 AM
Yes Mullen, that's a real interesting aspect.
Juan Castro>LP II
Posted by: Erik at February 15, 2007 10:26 AM
i think it's time for the landowners to publicly state how much they want for the site. in fact, it's long past due. quit the posturing and just state what you want. did it suddenly jump from 17.5 to 40? it's the publics money, tell the public what you want.
Posted by: mullen at February 15, 2007 3:48 PM
HC needs to get off their arse; grow a pair and condemn this thing or it will not get done.
LPII is NOT going to offer a price and IS NOT a willing seller. It's either "eminent domain" or "find another site." (period)
Posted by: Stadiumshill at February 15, 2007 4:12 PM
I told you this baseball stadium will never be built the night the bill passed and you refused to believe me.
This was a demonstration of utter stupidity of a pro baseball Hennepin County Commissioner. The idea that the owners of the land would not want market rates for their land?
What an imbecile this comissioner was, and Pawlenty and those that voted for the stadium look like even more of imbeciles.
People; this is what you elected! Politicians that pass bills without even having the facts or costs pinned down!
Posted by: jag at February 16, 2007 10:01 AM