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Discussions about a Vikings stadium in Arden Hills enter the 'nitty gritty' stage

A view of small calibre munitions production facilities was photographed, looking southwest toward the intersection of U.S. Highway 10 and State Highway 96, at the Twin Cities Army Ammunitions Plant in Arden Hills on Wednesday January 5, 2011. (Pioneer Press: Richard Marshall)

Activity surrounding a potential new stadium for the

Minnesota Vikings is heating up.

Ramsey County commissioners said Tuesday, after a

brief meeting with Vikings co- owner and president

Mark Wilf, that talks over a stadium in Arden Hills will enter the realm of "nitty-gritty" details next


Meanwhile, Wilf is making the rounds while in town,

scheduling discussions with Minneapolis Mayor R.

T. Rybak, Hennepin County Board Chairman Mike

Opat, Gov. Mark Dayton's point man Ted Mondale

and lawmakers likely to champion a way to pay for a

stadium. Those lawmakers indicated Tuesday that

they're edging closer to introducing a bill.

"There's a lot of action" was the summary by

Mondale and Lester Bagley, the franchise's vice

president of public affairs and stadium


Yet, almost nothing has been done in the open.

Ramsey County commissioner Rafael Ortega, one of

the county's lead officials in talks with the team over

a stadium at the shuttered Twin Cities Army

Ammunition Plant near Interstate 35W and U.S. 10 in

Arden Hills, said they "haven't laid out our cards


Ortega's comments came after a reporter's request

for any records produced by the county as it

considers various possible scenarios to pay a

portion of what could be a construction project in

the neighborhood of $1 billion. For example, a

sales tax hike has been floated privately, but it's

unclear how much money that might generate or

what proportion of the total cost the team is angling

to have the public pay.

"We've all done our analyses, shared notes and so

forth," Ortega said. "We haven't passed anything

across the table. All I can say is negotiations are

getting closer and closer. We'll get into the nitty-

gritty next week."