MINNEAPOLIS -- The Metrodome's roof will not be repaired in time for next Monday's Vikings game with the Chicago Bears, according to the Metropolitan Sports Facilities Commission. That sets the stage for moving the contest to the University of Minnesota's TCF Bank Stadium.
The Dome's air-supported roof was ripped open and deflated by an accumulation of heavy snow Sunday morning, and until late Tuesday afternoon the managers of the stadium had held out hope it could be repaired sooner.
The announcement came Tuesday evening after a day of intense discussions between the team, the NFL, the Commission and the University of Minnesota. Engineers on the site Tuesday found that the damage to the Teflon fabric ceiling was worse than originally hoped.
"Our first priority is the safety and well being of Vikings fans and player, the hundreds of youth sports, community and other groups that use the Metrodome throughout the year and our employees," Commission chairman Roy Terwilliger said in a prepared statement.
Vikings spokesman Jeff Anderson issued a statement Tuesday night assuring season ticket holders more information will be coming in the near future as to their status at the outdoor game. The Bank seats 50,000 in its current configuration, and the team has already sold 53,000 seats to Monday's game.
Last weekend's snow storm caused a large amount of snow on the Metrodome roof. On Sunday morning, the roof gave way, forcing last weekend's game to be moved to Detroit's Ford Field.
In a report on espn.com, vikings fans are being asked to help dig out TCF Stadium. Reportedly, snow has piled up in five-foot drifts in some areas.
Posted by Joe Dufek