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Why does the Hubert H Humphrey Metrodome have a label?

If Minneapolis is going to allow advertising on downtown buildings, shouldn’t they put businesses who actually reside in downtown Minneapolis ahead of ads for businesses outside the city?

mall of america field
It’s extraordinarily weird that one of the only brands you can find on a downtown building is an ad sold by a private company to another private company for an ad that appears on a publicly financed and publicly owned building.

Why do the vast majority of downtown buildings NOT have large signs advertising the businesses that reside within, while the Hubert H Humphrey (named in his memory) Metrodome has one on its roof advertising a mall in a Minneapolis suburb?

If Minneapolis is going to allow advertising on downtown buildings, shouldn’t they put businesses who actually reside in downtown Minneapolis ahead of ads for businesses outside the city?

A few years ago, I did the Segway tour out of St Anthony Main and listened to question after question from people who wondered which businesses occupied the towers in downtown Minneapolis. People honestly don’t know which businesses are contributing to make Minneapolis’ core such a strong and vibrant downtown due to the lack of logos on buildings. Those businesses deserve the recognition that a certain dough boy doesn’t.

Which is why it’s extraordinarily weird that one of the only brands you can find on a downtown building is an ad sold by a private company to another private company for an ad that appears on a publicly financed and publicly owned building.

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As I see it, both policies are too extreme. We should allow private businesses to promote themselves on privately financed buildings. And, we should not allow private businesses to sell advertising to private companies on publicly subsidized buildings (unless the revenue goes toward paying back the subsidies).

Is that too much to ask?

This post was written by Ed Kohler and originally published on The Deets. Follow Ed on Twitter: @edkohler.

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