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If it holds, bonding bill would be boon to capital city

The city of St. Paul is doing well in the bonding bill department — at least for now.

But the governor was looking for an $825 million bonding bill, so it’s too early to declare anything a done deal.

Included in the $925 bonding bill that made it through conference committee Tuesday are:

• $11 million for Como Zoo, to finish the polar bear exhibit and build a new gorilla home.

• $5 million for a new Asian Pacific Cultural Center in three of the old Hamm’s Brewery buildings on the East Side.

• $2 million to buy 4 acres of blighted land and a dilapidated building on the edge of the Bruce Vento Nature Sanctuary, near the river just east of downtown. (Money to build an interpretive center on that site will come from other sources.)

• $100,000 for planning for a renovated Midway Stadium. (The city had asked for $25 million for this and new soccer fields, in a joint venture with the Minnesota Amateur Sports Commission.)

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