Arden Hills Site Moves from Vikings to Plan B

Updated: 11/27/2012 7:28 PM By: Tom Hauser

Just over a year ago, it appeared the Minnesota Vikings might build their new stadium in Arden Hills.  The Ramsey County city is home to the former Twin Cities Army Ammunition Plant (TCAAP), a 427-acre site that needs millions in hazardous waste clean-up. That plan fell through when the Vikings decided the site of the current Metrodome is a better site for their stadium.

On Tuesday, Ramsey County decided to move on.  The Ramsey County Commission voted 5-2 to purchase and clean up the TCAAP site for about $30 million.  The land is valued at $28.5 million and owned by the federal government.  However, the county will spend $22.6 million to clean up the site. In exchange, the federal government will deduct that amount from the sale price of the land.

Ramsey County and the City of Arden Hills hope to attract major development and jobs to the site.  County commissioners Tony Bennett and Rafael Ortega mention biotech firms or a "robotics" industry campus on the site.  "I'd love to get a new corporate headquarters on that site," Ortega says.

But first the deal needs one final approval from a Congressional committee.  There's no timetable for when the deal will be finalized or the clean-up will begin.