Minneapolis Mayor R.T. Rybak announced Monday an agreement has been reached on a $97 million Target Center renovation project slated to begin next spring.
Timberwolves and Lynx owner Glen Taylor said the team will pay for almost 50 percent of the renovation for the 23-year-old building. The city of Minneapolis will contribute $48.5 million to the project, the Timberwolves and Lynx will pay $43 million and Anschutz Entertainment Group will pay $5.5 million.
"Yes, I would have liked a new facility, but I am a Minnesotan, I served in the legislature, I know about taxes because I pay a lot of them, and I thought about what would be the most common sense," Taylor said. "Let's take a building in a great location. We have great partners around us, many businesses around us already that help our area and take care of our fans. We have a building that has the basic needs our fans need, but it needed a fix-up."
Construction is expected to last 18 to 24 months but will take place in phases, allowing Target Center to remain open during most of the renovation, if not all of it, Rybak said.
The Target Center hosts over 200 events and draws over 1 million visitors each year, but with the new Vikings stadium, Target Field, TCF Bank Stadium and the Xcel Energy Center each clawing to book headliners, pressure builds for all Twin Cities entertainment venues to keep the pace, especially the weathered ones.
Some lawmakers would prefer all venues fell under the same management umbrella so each could have a fair slice of the scheduling pie. There's about 50 major concert events each year in the Twin Cities, but some experts say there's simply too many venues to levy.
The Minneapolis City Council will see the detailed Target Center agreement in the next few weeks.