Vikes stadium dig starts Monday, public event Tuesday; purple shovels?

Mortenson Construction is telling neighbors around the Metrodome that digging is going to start in the stadium parking lot on Monday.

In a construction update issued today, the company says trucks will be hauling dirt from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. starting Dec. 2. That’s the day before the formal groundbreaking, scheduled to start at 10 a.m. on Tuesday.

Lynn Littlejohn, Mortenson’s director of community affairs, said in a “Dear Neighbor” letter that the trucks will follow the same route during an estimated four months. (See map below)

“We anticipate minimal disruption, as the route to and from the site is a direct one to the freeway. The trucks will come in from 3rd Avenue, make a left on Norman McGrew Place, then a left on S. 4th Street directly to the site. Upon leaving the site, the trucks will take South 4th Street to 35W south.”

The letter also says Mortenson plans a community meeting in January.

The public will also be invited to the formal groundbreaking ceremonies at the stadium on Tuesday. The Minnesota Sports Facilities Authority will hold an event in a tent outside the Dome. That tent will hold about 600 people.  The tickets are free and available outside Gate D, starting at 9 a.m. on Tuesday.

If the crowd is bigger than the tent can accommodate, MSFA spokeswoman Jennifer Hathaway said spectators may gather at the outdoor site of the actual groundbreaking.

Team and stadium officials say the event will even feature purple shovels to mark the occasion.

Here’s where trucks will be hauling: