Wilf Family Donates a Green Building in NY while Demanding Publicly Subsidized Sprawl in MN #wilfare

Remember yesterday when I wrote about the Wilf family’s donation of enough money to a school that the school would slap their family name on a building?

Here’s an interesting nugget about that: The building they helped pay for in New York includes “Cool features include a green roof and terraces, and bike storage space.”

The Roof is Alive
A green roof and two planted terraces, bedded with grasses, ferns, and trees, will help insulate the building year-round and filter pollutants out of rainwater, thereby reducing runoff into the city’s sewers. Terraces on the second and sixth floors serve as informal meeting areas, with walking paths enclosed by creeping perennials and grasses.

That’s a nice touch. You’d think that a family like the Wilfs, who understands the value of building green when it’s in their own backyard, would also understand the value of building green when they’re proposing stadium plans in Minnesota.

But, it turns out that that’s not the case. Instead, the Wilf family wants to build a 21,000 car parking lot in a non-transit friendly suburb rather than refurbish our existing stadium or build a new stadium on our current transit system. One would have to be either downright stupid or extremely greedy to ignore the benefits of refurbishing an existing stadium or building on transit lines. In this case, I’m going to assume that greed is causing ignorance.

Wilf Hall Write-Up

The Wilf’s generous donation to NYU Law School didn’t earn them the cover of the alumni mag, but they did get a 2-page spread on Pages 10-11. The article recalls the history of the building the Wilf family name has been attached to:

Preservation Hall
Established in the 1920s, the Provincetown Playhouse premiered many of Eugene O’Neill’s plays. Wilf Hall retains all four walls of this historic gem, which will continue as a working theater run by the Steinhardt School of Education to hold classes, readings, and storytelling evenings, and debut new music.

Sounds like a solid act of preservation. Imagine what could be done in Minnesota if the Wilf family applied the same level of generosity, ecological considerations, and historic preservation to their stadium plans? Were they to do that, they could refurbish the Metrodome into a next generation facility. Leverage as much of the current structure as feasible. Avoid sprawl. Build an eco-friendly tailgating facility. And continue the team’s history in the City of Minneapolis for many more decades as the location that’s been the home to the team for the majority of the team’s history.

Should the Wilf family do for the State of Minnesota what they’ve done for the NYU Law School, I’m confident that they’d get much more than Page 10-11 coverage in this market.

2 thoughts on “Wilf Family Donates a Green Building in NY while Demanding Publicly Subsidized Sprawl in MN #wilfare”

  1. Do you honestly think that the Wilf’s care about Minnesota? Absolutely not! They dont even care about their own employees…who have worked for them for years not even a pension plan! They are the most selfish,self-centered people i know. I have known contractors who have done work on their projects; the contractors woul give them a price for work to be done, i.e 60,000 and at the end would pay them what they would tell the contractors”i will pay you 30,000 cause that it was i think your work was worth”. The Wilf’s are Billion Dollar Real Estate Developers they empire started in New Jersey and their main office is in Short Hills,New Jersey….Wilf’s dont care about people, they are only about themselves and how they can make an extra buck or two…The only reason they bought the Vikings so that they can make a name for themselves and develop real estate….the only reason…..WAKE UP WRITERS! YOU DONT KNOW SQUAT ABOUT THEM!

  2. Was that the voice of RALPH NADER or the voice of God???

    Dayton is just terrible you know for coining the idea of The People’s Stadium and his outward thanking of the Wilf’s for being patient and for bringing a $1billion deal to MN. And some folks think that the Vikings are such a giant cash machine that the team can pay for it’s own stadium and it’s rich ticket holders are willing to do just that. Nope—we don’t need no Peoples stadium.

    Of course, if you didn’t vote for Dayton you might well have been much happier with Emmer.

    And, of course, Nader ran for President in 2000 and people voted for Nader mostly as an alternative to Gore who had been tarnished a bit by Slick Willie and zippergate. I wonder how many folks who
    Voted for Nader now realize they elected Bush with a bit of help from Scalia.

    So put yourself in Dayton’s shoes and play the game like Pawlenty did by saying you value the Vikings presence but do nothing to replace a stadium which exists physically but is outdated economic terms. And then the Vikings leave town eventually and five years later Minnesota will be out looking to attract a new subsidized NFL team just as happened in every other NFL city that lost a team. Bash the Wilf’s, just as much as you would have bashed the irascible Calvin Griffith for bringing the Twins to MN as a tyrant tightwad owner.

    Perhaps a bit of foresight might help. The team is only going to have wealthy ownership and other than Denny Hecker no local buyer was interested in the phantom Vikings cash flow stream. The NFL does screen it’s owners and apparently concluded that the Wilf’s reputation and history met league standards. If you want an NFL team, the league prevents public ownership. A rich guy has to be the owner.

    The alternative may well be down to a single choice. Pay Wilfare or say goodbye to the Vikes. It’s probably not going to be your choice that wins out.

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