With the return of the Vikings to downtown, the tradition of fan tailgating will follow. The Vikings are working with the Downtown Minneapolis Neighborhood Association to identify appropriate tailgating locations and ordinances that are sensitive to recent neighborhood changes and the growing residential population around the stadium. Joe Tamburino, Vice Chair of the Board, will represent the DMNA in this process.
The current tailgating zone was established in 1982. Under current city ordinance, any Class A lot within that zone may apply for a tailgating license. Many of the Class A lots have been taken out of play due to development or proposed development. Some of the lots may not be politically viable due to the concerns of adjacent stakeholders. The Vikings will work with the DMNA to propose changes to the tailgating zone and ordinances. The shared goal is to approach City Council with a mutually agreeable proposal. The final decision will rest with City Council and private lot owners.
The DMNA has proposed modifications (as outlined in the document above) to tailgating boundaries to meet the changing needs of the area. No other changes to the current ordinances are proposed, as law already requires tailgating lot operators to provide adequate bathrooms and trash receptacles as well as remove litter within 300ft of lot boundaries. The law also prohibits amplified sound. Lot operators that fail to comply with these laws risk losing their tailgating license. The challenge for the City will be ensuring the adequate monitoring and enforcement of these regulations.
Through public meetings, letters and an electronic survey distributed by the DMNA, community members expressed strong concerns over litter and other impacts (noise, public drunkenness, public urination) that were associated with Vikings game day tailgating and festivities during the “Metrodome era”. To raise awareness and encourage improved monitoring, the DMNA will share these documented concerns with the City, Vikings, and U.S. Bank Stadium leadership as well as tailgating operators. When tailgating resumes, DMNA will gladly serve as a conduit for complaints or comments about tailgating lots from residents and/or visitors. The DMNA will track and promptly report any violations of the City’s code to Business Licensing and lot operators directly.
The City and the Vikings are also discussing the option of game day tailgating on select closed streets. The neighborhood association has yet to be included in that discussion, but will do its best to track the details and report back to the neighborhood.
Elliot Park – Vikings Final Tailgating Agreement (Elliot Park completed a similar process with Vikings in 2014.)
To inform negotiations with the Vikings and collect input from community members, the DMNA engaged in the following activities:
Assembling Impact Statements: The DMNA has been reaching out to area residences, business and institutions to collect impact statements on the benefit/harm of tailgating. To raise awareness and encourage improved monitoring, the DMNA will share these documented concerns with the City, Vikings, and U.S. Bank Stadium leadership as well as tailgating operators. If you would like to submit a statement, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tailgating Survey: The DMNA circulated this this survey to collect input on the benefits and harm of tailgating. Now that a proposed agreement has been approved the board, results of this survey will be used to raise awareness of community concerns and facilitate improved monitoring.