For nearly two decades,
Metropolitan Stadium was the home of some great Minnesota Vikings
teams. In 1953, officials began looking at sites to construct a
stadium that could possibly bring a baseball or football
team to the area. In 1955, a farm was chosen as the stadium site
in Bloomington, MN, a suburb of Minneapolis.
Construction on Metropolitan Stadium began in June 1955. The
stadium was completed in just one year and opened on April 24,
1956. Initially, the stadium was the home of the Minneapolis
Millers (minor league baseball). Metropolitan Stadium consisted of
a massive three tier grandstand that could seat 18,200 fans.
In August 1959, five local
businessmen were awarded a franchise in the new American Football
League. Five months later in January 1960, the same ownership
group consisting of Bill Boyer, Ole Haugsrud, Bernie Ridder, H. P.
Skoglund and Max Winter forfeited its AFL membership in order to
be awarded a NFL franchise. The Minnesota Vikings were born when
they played their first game against the Chicago Bears at
Metropolitan Stadium on September 10, 1961. By the time the
Vikings moved into the stadium, it had gained a professional
baseball tenant; the Minnesota Twins. The capacity of Metropolitan
Stadium grew from 18,200 to over 40,000. By 1965, a double decked
grandstand was added along the south sidelines, replacing
the bleachers and increasing the seating capacity to 45,919. The scoreboard was located
beyond the east end zone.
the expansions in the 1960s, Metropolitan Stadium remained the
same until it closed. Between the late 1970s and early 1980s
Metropolitan Stadium fell into disrepair leading to the Vikings
and Twins to want a new stadium. As a result, the Metrodome, a
domed stadium, was built in downtown Minneapolis for both teams.
The Vikings played their last game at Metropolitan Stadium on December 20,
1981. The stadium was demolished in 1982 and The Mall of America
sits where Metropolitan Stadium was once located.