The Minnesota Vikings want Chicago Avenue renamed.
The Star Tribune reports that the Vikings want the portion of Chicago Avenue changed because the Chicago Bears are a Vikings rival. They prefer “Vikings Way,” presumably because “Road to a Super Bowl” was inappropriate.
But what did Kirby Puckett ever do to the Vikings? In the renaming, Kirby Puckett Way — Chicago Avenue also carries the commemorative name from when Kirby played on the site of the publicly financed new football stadium — would go by the wayside too. The Vikings already wiped out Rod Carew Drive near the stadium. It is now Bud Grant Way.
According to city guidelines, “a street name should be changed only if there will be a public benefit that clearly outweighs the public confusion and cost that would be created by the name change.”
In its application, the Vikings responded with this:
“Changing the name of this segment of the street to Vikings Way will be adjacent to the future US Bank Stadium where the Minnesota Vikings will play football under a 30-year lease agreement.”
In other words, changing one block to Vikings Way will help fans understand that the football stadium is around there somewhere, in case the behemoth that presently looks like the crashed alien ship at the end of “Independence Day” isn’t enough of a clue.
City officials apparently are prepared to do what Minneapolis does best: Roll over and play dead for whatever the Vikings want. City staff has recommended the name changed be approved when the City Council decides the matter next week.
After that, someone should take a look at renaming Washington Street.