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U.S. Bank Stadium Panels, Exterior Walls Causing Concern

U.S. Bank Stadium, June 16, 2016

U.S. Bank Stadium is facing some issues, as officials are expressing concern about water leaks and the durability of exterior panels. 

The facility opened for the Minnesota Vikings last fall and, though generally billed as a fine venue, has faced a few issues along the way. The zinc panels that characterize the stadium’s exterior have been damaged in a few locations, with one of the more notable examples occurring late last year, when a December storm caused panels to fall off the building. Leaks have also been spotted inside the stadium, with puddles reported in a concourse, women’s restroom, and storage space. Furthermore, icicles had be manually removed from the stadium after a storm last year.

M.A. Mortenson is currently working to repair the northwest section of the exterior of U.S. Bank Stadium, where water damage has taken place, and the venue is being analyzed by engineers and metallurgists. However, with Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority (MSFA) officials wanting to firmly secure the state of the stadium’s exterior, discussions are taking place about whether further repairs will be needed to the facility. Rick Evans, executive director of MSFA, and Mortenson senior vice president John Wood did not present a cost estimate on potential repairs.

A possible solution would lead to the replacement of moisture barriers on the joints of U.S. Bank Stadium’s interior panels, the installation of a new layer of Tyvek below the zinc panels, and the placement of a heat edge that would stop icicles from taking shape. However, should they be completed, questions about the price and scope of future repairs will have to be answered. More from the Star Tribune:

Neither Evans nor Wood would characterize the possible cost or range of repairs. But if the problem is big, the cost would be high and create a potentially major negotiation over who pays.

First, engineers and metallurgists, contractors and public officials need to reach agreement on the problem. Then they need to agree on the best solution and figure out who pays.

“I’m not focusing on the cost,” Evans said. “I’m focusing on the cause and the solution.”

Still Evans said he doesn’t expect the MSFA to pay for any repairs.

Wood, however, said the addition of the Tyvek layer on the one wall would be the responsibility of the MSFA.

Despite the scope of the review of the exterior panels, Evans said, “it shouldn’t be read to mean we’ve got horrible problems … it’s a complex fastening system and we’re looking at all of it to make sure what we paid for is what we’re getting.”

U.S. Bank Stadium features numerous design features that are fairly unique among stadiums, some of which–including pivoting glass doors and an efficiency cooling system–have worked thus far. The facility hosted its first major event last August, when Chelsea and AC Milan squared off at the venue.

Image courtesy Minnesota Vikings. 

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