Twins stadium: Strike two?

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Twins stadium: Strike two?

Whole Foods could be doomsville for Twinsville

The Strib has picked up what was first reported in the Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal last week, and then by the Minneapolis Observer and Skyway News: Whole Foods is coming to downtown Minneapolis.

All four stories mention that, since the announcment that two news Lunds locations will be coming soon to downtown, the urban core will suddenly have three upscale grocery stores. (Optimists cite this as another reason the downtown housing boom will continue.)

What the stories don't mention is that the proposed Whole Foods site, 2.4 acres of prime real estate that's home to Luther Automotive Group's Jaguar dealership, has long been spied by the Minnesota Twins as one of the backup locations for a new ballpark. Some within the organization have preferred it over much talked-about sites like the riverfront proposals in both Minneapolis and St. Paul.

Of course, the leading contender--and most sensical location--is the so-called Rapid Park site, a parking lot abutting the Target Center parking ramps. Stadium advocates have nicknamed the area "Twinsville," but that was before the owners of the site said they were thinking about selling it to condo developers after stadium plans showed no signs of life this legislative session.

One downtown bar owner says many businesses are holding out hopes that some kind of Twinsville will be revived, but the news of the Whole Foods plan is seen as another sign that the days of bringing a new Twins stadium downtown are slipping away.

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