Here’s a crazy stat: from 2009 to 2019, the Twin Cities opened (or significantly remodeled) six different sports stadium.
Total price tag? $2.19 billion dollars.
*cue up Mr. Evil from Austin Powers*
The various stadiums received funding from a mixture of public and private funds, at times leading to some serious controversy around the metro.
(Should taxpayers really be on the hook for $500 million worth of construction costs for a new football stadium, in exchange for an unmeasurable amount of public good and a very measurable increase to Zygi Wilf’s net worth? Locals have strong opinions on both sides…)
Controversy aside, the spending spree means Minneapolis and St. Paul now hold one of the most impressive collections of sports stadiums in the world.
Unlike most cities, which often share stadiums for multiple teams or even different sports, the Twin Cities now house dedicated facilities for nearly every major sport.
Football, basketball, baseball, hockey, soccer – heck, even women’s roller derby – we’ve got a stadium for each!
And it doesn’t even matter if we’re talking professional sports, college athletics, or even minor leagues. The Twin Cities has got ’em all!
Today we’re covering everything you ever wanted to know about all the sports stadiums in Minneapolis and St. Paul.
- Quick Info About the Biggest Stadiums in Minneapolis and St. Paul
- Our Stadium’s Impact on Our Cities
- Current Stadiums in Minneapolis
- U.S. Bank Stadium (Minnesota Vikings)
- Target Field (Minnesota Twins)
- Target Center (Minnesota Timberwolves and Minnesota Lynx)
- Huntington Bank Stadium fka TCF Bank Stadium (Minnesota Gophers Football)
- Williams Arena (Minnesota Gophers Basketball)
- 3M Arena at Mariucci (Minnesota Gophers Men’s Hockey)
- Ridder Arena (Minnesota Gophers Women’s Hockey)
- Siebert Field (Minnesota Gopher’s Baseball)
- Current Stadiums in St. Paul
Quick Info About the Biggest Stadiums in Minneapolis and St. Paul
Our Stadium’s Impact on Our Cities
Here’s one nice thing about our gluttonous stadium collection; they’re all downtown, right in the heart of the cities.
Many of our fellow U.S. cities don’t do this.
I’ll use Dallas as an example, since I grew up there. They took some serious heat for developing their expensive pro football and baseball stadiums nowhere near Dallas. (Both actually sit in Arlington, TX, a completely different metro area that’s a full 30 minutes west of downtown Dallas). Instead of their stadiums contributing to vibrant downtown areas, Dallas Cowboys/Texas Rangers visitors are treated to long commutes and a sea of suburban parking lots.
And you’ll see this same pattern repeated in many cities all over the country!
The Twin Cities, by contrast, at least plop their many stadiums right in the middle of the action. And while I’m no urban planner, you can’t help but notice that most of the areas around our new stadiums go through amazing revitalization shortly after the games begin.
- Soon after the opening of Target Field, Minneapolis’s North Loop neighborhood became the fastest growing spot in the metro. Today, Target Field is now surrounded by endless breweries and delicious restaurants, leading Forbes to crown it “One of America’s Best Hipster Neighborhoods.”
- After the $65 million CHS Field opened in 2015, Lowertown St. Paul transformed from a sleepy and abandoned district into one of the hottest parts of the St. Paul scene, almost overnight.
- Shortly after the completion of US Bank Stadium, Downtown East Minneapolis saw an influx of trendy condos and developments, seemingly right on cue.
Love them or hate them, our sports stadiums seem to shape the very city that we call home.
Current Stadiums in Minneapolis
U.S. Bank Stadium (Minnesota Vikings)
U.S. Bank Stadium is the home of the NFL’s Minnesota Vikings.
Located in Downtown Minneapolis, U.S. Bank cost an astonishing $1.1 billion dollars to build and opened in 2016. The venue seats over 66,000 spectators.
U.S. Bank Stadium has also hosted Super Bowl LII, the NCAA Final Four college basketball tournament, the Summer X games, and numerous high profile concerts.
The first soccer match occurred in 2016, when European powerhouses AC Milan and Chelsea FC squared off. Occasionally, U.S. Bank stadium also hosts college baseball games during the winter. (Current plans have the Minnesota’s Golden Gophers playing 15 home baseball games at U.S. Bank each winter.)
- More info: U.S. Bank Stadium
Target Field (Minnesota Twins)
Target Field is the new baseball stadium for the Minnesota Twins.
When it opened in 2010, Target Field ended a long and lengthy search for a new Twins Stadium to replace the old Metrodome. (At one point during the decade-long debacle, the Twins even threatened to move to St. Paul!) Eventually, the team found a unusually small location in Minneapolis’s North Loop neighborhood, but managed to squeeze in a beautiful ballpark for the low-low price of $555 million dollars.
That said, $555 million gets you one awesome baseball field! Shortly after opening, ESPN The Magazine ranked the new Twins stadium as the best baseball experience in North America.
PS – did you know? Although most fans balked at the idea of an open air baseball field in Minnesota (a state where MLB’s early April opening days can and will be met with snow) Target field is actually MLB’s only heated field. The stadium has an elaborate heating system to keep the grass green during cold weather, and all the concourses feature an endless line of radiant heaters along the walkways.
- More info: Target Field
Target Center (Minnesota Timberwolves and Minnesota Lynx)
The Target Center in downtown Minneapolis is one of the only Minneapolis stadiums that shares more than one team. Both the NBA’s Minnesota Timberwolves and the WNBA’s Minnestoa Lynx share the arena, an ode to the two franchises once being held by the same owner.
Originally built in 1990 for $104 million, the Target Center underwent a $145 million dollar renovation in 2015.
Outside of basketball, the Target Center is a popular concert venue in Minneapolis, and it’s also seen a number of other miscellaneous events, including WWE, MMA, PBR, and political rallies.
- More info: Target Center
Huntington Bank Stadium fka TCF Bank Stadium (Minnesota Gophers Football)
TCF Bank Stadium opened in 2009 and is the home of the Golden Gophers college football team.
Constructed for $303.3 million, the stadium is an impressive brick structure with an enormous video board and a unique horseshoe design that allows for unobstructed views of the beautiful Minneapolis skyline. (The scoreboard cost $9 million and is the largest in college football!)
In 2021, the stadium was renamed to Huntington Bank Stadium after a TCF Bank merger.
Interesting trivia: TCF bank stadium has the largest home locker room in all of football. (College or professional!)
- More info: Huntington Bank Stadium
Williams Arena (Minnesota Gophers Basketball)
The Williams Arena is one of the most historic sports stadiums in Minneapolis. Here’s a brief timeline:
- 1928: The stadium first opens as “The Field House” as the home for the Minnesota Gophers. Over the years, the facility was also used as the practice field for football, baseball, and various other sports.
- 1949: The Field House is remodeled and renamed as the “Williams Arena” after the former head football coach of the Minnesota Gophers. The new space included both a basketball court and a hockey rink, which the Gophers hockey team used for decades.
- 1985: The hockey side of the arena is renamed the Mariucci Arena.
- 1993: The final hockey game was played in the “old” Mariucci Arena.
Today, the Williams Arena still hosts college basketball games for the Minnesota Gophers. Colloquially, it’s known as “The Barn” and they call the student section “The Barnyard.”
- More info: Williams Arena
3M Arena at Mariucci (Minnesota Gophers Men’s Hockey)
Completed in 1993, the “new” Mariucci Arena is named after Minnesota hockey legend John Mariucci. The facility houses 10,000 fans and includes an Olympic sized sheet of ice.
In 2017, local mega-company 3M bought naming rights for the arena for $11.2 million, and the Mariucci Arena was re-branded to “3M Arena at Mariucci” for the next 14 years.
Today, the 3M Arena hosts college hockey for the Minnesota Gophers.
- More info: 3M Arena at Mariucci
Ridder Arena (Minnesota Gophers Women’s Hockey)
When the Ridder Arena opened in 2002, it was the first facility dedicated solely to women’s athletics in the entire country.
The Ridder Arena features an NHL sized ice surface and is famous for hosting women’s college hockey for the University of Minnesota. It also features an adjacent indoor tennis facility for the University.
Total seating capacity for the hockey arena is 3,400, while the tennis facility offers a cozy 480 person seating capacity.
Fun fact: The Ridder Arena is connected by an underground tunnel to the Mariucci Arena, which allows the facility to share ice cleaning equipment.
- More info: Ridder Arena
Siebert Field (Minnesota Gopher’s Baseball)
Siebert Field is located near Dinkytown Minneapolis and is the home of the University of Minnesota’s college baseball team.
In 2012, the University of Minnesota demolished the original Seibert Field (built in 1971) and built a new stadium at the same location. Construction of the new Seibert Field took less than a year and cost $7.2 million.
- More info: Siebert Field
Current Stadiums in St. Paul
While the St. Paul side of the Twin Cities don’t have quite the number of stadiums as Minneapolis, St. Paul still includes several very noteworthy stadiums.
Xcel Energy Center (Minnesota Wild)
The Xcel Energy center is the hockey stadium for the Minnesota Wild, located right in the heart of downtown St. Paul.
The stadium opened in the year 2000 and brought the state of hockey its first NHL team since the Minnesota North Stars tragically relocated to Dallas in 1994.
The “X” includes 17,954 seats and is known for its absolutely electric atmosphere. Minnesotans are famously passionate about their hockey, which is probably why ESPN named Xcel Energy Center the best overall sports venue in the United States in 2004.
One of the coolest touches at the Xcel Energy Center is the concourse area, which contains a hockey jersey from every high school in the state of Minnesota. This is the state of hockey, indeed!
- More info: Xcel Energy Center
CHS Field (Triple-A Minor League Baseball)
CHS Field was the multi-year home of the independent league St. Paul Saints, but in 2021 the Minnesota Twins announced that CHS Field and the St. Paul Saints would become their minor league affiliate.
Originally a crumbling industrial facility, CHS Field completed its $64 million dollar construction in 2015. At its opening, architects praised its state of the art and environmentally-friendly design, with 12% of the stadium’s electricity generated by solar panels and all of its water supplied by an elaborate 27,000 gallon rain water collection system.
With beautiful views of the St. Paul skyline, the field was so laughably better than other stadiums in the Saint’s original independent league that it shattered attendance records and was selected to host the all-star game numerous times. So, it wasn’t all that surprising when the Minnesota Twins called in 2020 and requested the stadium be used for their minor league affiliate moving forward.
These days, the Triple-A Saints are just one step below Major League Baseball, and are a common stop for professional Twins players rehabbing injuries or up-and-coming future MLB stars.
- More info: CHS Field
Allianz Field (Minnesota United FC)
Allianz Field is a beautiful 19,400 seat soccer stadium that opened in 2019 as the home of the Minnesota United FC, the only Major League Soccer team in Minnesota.
The stadium was built by the same construction company that built U.S. Bank Stadium and the same design firm which drafted Target Field, TCF Bank Stadium, and the Xcel Energy Center.
Interestingly, Allianz Field is one of the only stadiums in the Twin Cities that didn’t receive public funding; Minnesota United funded the $200 million price tag entirely with private money.
- More info: Allianz Field
Roy Wilkins Auditorium (Women’s Roller Derby)
Originally built in 1932, the Roy Wilkins Auditorium is a legend.
The unique history starts with it’s design by world-renown architect Clarence W. Wigington. Wiginton was the first black licensed architect in the State of Minnesota, and he arguably left a bigger impact on the look of St. Paul than anyone – over 60 of his buildings still stand today. (He designed plenty of St. Paul landmarks like Como Zoo, the Harriet Island Pavilion, the Highland Park Clubhouse, Holman’s Field more.)
Over the years, the 5,000 seat auditorium has hosted several legendary concerts, including Elvis Presley, Bob Dylan, KISS, and Prince.
In 1984, it was renamed the Roy Wilkins Auditorium after the former director of the NAACP.
While the arena remains connected to the Xcel Energy Center via hallway, the arena only currently hosts women’s roller derby, of all things.
- More info: Roy Wilkins Auditorium