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Minnesota United practices ahead of home opener, city officials work out transportation plans

April 03, 2019 06:24 AM

Wednesday, Minnesota United will hold its first official team practice at its new home in St. Paul.

Many last-minute touches are happening inside Allianz Field before the home opener, including scoreboard lighting and manicuring the field.

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The team's big home opener is next weekend and the match will put the city's transportation plan to the test.

City planners are hoping fans leave their cars at home and either walk or bike to the stadium.

RELATED: St. Paul lays out transportation, parking plans for Allianz Field

According to officials, 20,000 people are expected to attend the match, which could mean traffic problems for everyone.

"A lot of people rely on street parking in neighborhoods in Midway to park their private cars so we are just going to have to take a wait and see approach to see how packed in these cars get," Kate Mudge, with the Midway-Hamline District Council, said.

Officials said the intersection of Snelling and University avenues will see a lot of traffic.

St. Paul city leaders said they have a plan to ease the parking pain.

There will be 2,500 parking spaces at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds and stadium shuttles will be available.

Light rail lines will also carry about 600 people per trip.

City officials say the east and west light rail platforms on Snelling Avenue will be able to handle up to 1,800 passengers waiting for trains.

However, some people don't think the plan will work.

"Everybody would have to be squished like sardines to get 900 people on the platform and climbing on each other; I just can't see it," resident Naomi Karstad said.

St. Paul city officials advise those heading out to the to visit the city's website to view all of the transportation options.

KSTP has reached out to city leaders for a comment on those plans but has not yet heard back.

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