Add roof to plans for new Twins stadium

Add roof to plans for new Twins stadium By The Capitol Journal Baseball may be the national pastime, but in Minnesota, trying to build a new stadium for the Twins comes in a close second.

After countless attempts to work out some sort of public funding for the stadium, the Twins and their supporters are at it again. This time, the proposal is for a $478 million open air stadium.

The difference in this proposal is that Twins owner Carl Pohlad would put up $125 million with the rest of the project funded by an extra sales tax in Hennepin County.

The economics of baseball aren�t pretty. Players are paid millions of dollars and the teams that pay them, in turn, expect taxpayers to fund their stadiums.

Even uglier is the fact that when taxpayers say no to the owner of their local team, there is always another city willing to lure the team away with the promise of a lucrative stadium deal.

However, it should be noted that from a South Dakota perspective � particularly a central South Dakota perspective � the current plan is fatally flawed.

That flaw is the failure to put a roof on the stadium. The money isn�t there, organizers say, for a retractable roof, though the stadium would be made �roof-ready� in case anyone comes up with the money later on.

The baseball season starts in April and those days and nights are cold. The summers can get hot in Minnesota and those 10,000 lakes aren�t all spring-fed. Sometimes it rains.

Baseball purists can complain all they want about the Metrodome, but fans who live long distances away know that when they buy their tickets they�re guaranteed two things:

1. A long drive.

2. Seeing a ballgame.

Organizers of the current drive to get a new stadium for the Twins had better add a roof to their plans, or they may find that out-of-state fans are going to be less likely to make the trip to Minnesota.

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