Saint Paul, Minnesota, United States
The new home of Major League Soccer’s Minnesota United, Allianz Field boasts the latest in amenities and technology while also being sustainably-designed to minimize environmental impact and energy usage. Its elegant “flow” design concept features LED lighting throughout the facility. The 360-degree canopy over the bowl protects fans and players from the elements, reduces light and noise from spilling into the neighborhood, and creates an intimate and intimidating home pitch atmosphere. The building is designed to be a soccer-first facility while also hosting events year-round.
Allianz Field also responds to its environment in ways that might go unnoticed, but not unappreciated, by the layperson. With a steady stream of cars zooming by on I-94, the stadium’s southern profile rises up to greet them. To the north resides the historic Midway neighborhood, so the stadium scales down to a more approachable and human scale.
Sticking with the neighborly theme, one of Allianz Field’s most welcoming and expansive spaces is a 28,000-square-foot Great Lawn situated to the north. The green space invites the public in year-round with lush Kentucky Bluegrass and a variety of native trees picked to maximize shade and produce brilliant fall foliage. Altogether, the site’s landscape and urban design have turned a once-contaminated and vacant plot into the charming first act of a bigger production. The match day atmosphere has already been hailed by the likes of ESPN, who called it the best MLS stadium experience in a 2019 feature. The team, likewise, has lifted its level of play to playoff caliber.
Allianz Field is extraordinary: beautiful and unique, environmentally-sensitive, intimate and fan-oriented, and true to the sport of soccer.DR. BILL MCGUIRE / MNUFC Lead Owner
Look around Allianz Field and details abound both big and small. Take, for instance, the signage. Developed in collaboration with Twin Cities-based branding agency Zeus Jones and inspired by the MNUFC crest, it employs a subtle folding theme to mimic a scarf or ribbon. Moving up in scale, graphic murals bookend the supporters’ section in the south and highlight joint community initiatives of the club and corporate partner Bell Bank. The team story continues on the opposite end, where a replica analog clock and scoreboard was carried over from the team’s old home in nearby Blaine, Minn.
Whether it was for the club or its corporate partners, the Allianz Field experience was carefully branded with the fans in mind. We took note of every stage in their match day journey, creating one cohesive aesthetic the delivers value for both them and partners. The league has taken notice as well, honoring Minnesota United with both Corporate Partnerships Executive (Katie Mattis) and Team of the Year for 2019.
Staying true to Minnesota’s welcoming culture, Allianz Field caters to all ticketholders with a variety of warm and inviting hospitality spaces. Ranging from light to dark tones, each one offers a distinct atmosphere while embracing the same communal creed. There’s the fan-favorite Brew Hall, where fans sip on pints while sitting family-style at solid oak tables. High ceilings and garage doors give the space a cozy yet expansive feel.
Nestled below the seating bowl and concourse, the Field Club brings fans up close and personal to players as they travel between the field and locker room. The club’s signature design feature is a custom ceiling that mimics the stadium’s iconic exterior skin. Lying beneath are custom rugs with patterns inspired by topographic maps of Minnesota lakes. Taken altogether, Allianz Field’s contemporary interiors continue a Minnesota tradition of drawing people together with an elegant and understated touch.
Every home deserves a great lawn. Allianz Field is no exception, boasting a 28,000-square-foot green space with lush Kentucky Bluegrass and a variety of native trees. Each species of tree was picked to maximize shade and produce brilliant fall foliage. Underneath is a reservoir that stores rainwater collected from the stadium’s canopy. An estimated 2 million gallons of water is filtered and re-used each year to irrigate the beautiful urban park above. Elsewhere, rainwater that falls on paved areas funnels into underground tree trenches, nourishing plants while naturally filtering out contaminants before it flows back into public pipes.
Halfway between the downtowns of Minneapolis and Saint Paul, Allianz Field’s central location is more than symbolic of the Twin Cities shared history. It’s strategically located along multiple major transit routes to maximize access and growing urban mobility trends. There’s the A Line bus rapid transit route, then there’s the Metro Green Line. The latter opened in 2014 as the metro area’s second light rail line. The city of Saint Paul projects more than 1 in 3 match attendees will use mass transit. For those looking to live or work closers, plans are in the works to develop the stadium’s surrounding property for a mix of uses.
One of Major League Soccer’s newest members, Minnesota United was an ideal candidate to embrace the role of innovator with its stadium. It’s started with the bigger picture, which inevitably informed the stadium’s exterior. A dynamic skin made of bespoke laminated PTFE mesh captures the kinetic energy of the thousands of lakes that dot Minnesota’s terrain. At night, 1,700 hand-tuned LED lights evoke the Northern Lights that grace the state’s skies.
The wrapper gives the venue its iconic look and is arguably one of the most integral pieces of the Minnesota United brand moving into the future. Mesmerizing, sleek, stunning. All have been used to describe the effect, but words and photos don’t do it justice. In order to fully appreciate the stadium’s curb appeal, you need to experience it in real life.
Facts and Figures
- Exterior LED lights
- Furthest seat from pitch
- 125 ft
- Best New Travel Attractions | USA Today
- Venue of the Year Finalist | Stadium Business Summit
- Best MLS Stadium Experience | ESPN
- Architecture XLarge: Citation | AIA Kansas City