University of Minnesota TCF Bank Stadium Water Resources

Minneapolis, Minnesota

When the University of Minnesota decided to bring Gopher Football back on campus, SRF was selected to provide the infrastructure and landscape improvements needed to make the project a success. SRF worked closely with the University, architects, construction manager, and City of Minneapolis to develop multi purpose site improvements and landscaping that would effectively support the stadium and also improve the natural environment around the stadium. 

SRF assembled a Best Management Practices (BMP) toolbox during the schematic design that included a wide range of BMPs to meet stormwater quality treatment and rate control requirements. These included bioretention basins/swales adjacent to parking areas, depressed tree “bosques” and stormwater planters in the plazas, underground sand filters and cisterns for rainwater reuse, permeable pavement within the plazas, and level spreaders. Hydrodynamic separators were suggested for use where other BMPs weren’t feasible. 

The options were limited by high groundwater table and contaminated soils/groundwater, space constraints, and the need for rate control to existing tunnel systems, resulting in the elimination of some BMPs from the toolbox. Through meetings with a number of stakeholders at the University and City of Minneapolis staff, a stormwater plan emerged that met the performance goals of the project, created attractive landscape features, and offered a number of different BMPs that could be studied for effectiveness once established. Constructability and maintenance issues were also discussed during development of the plan. 

One of the most challenging aspects of the project involved meeting City requirements for stormwater management during all phases of construction. The SWPPP was revised a number of times to reflect changes that evolved through the various phases of construction, and temporary measures were developed to protect the more sensitive BMPs from construction sediments. 

The final site includes innovative stormwater treatment designed to respond proactively to stormwater management goals and create attractive landscape features. The stormwater elements work to organize and separate different land uses. Water quality BMPs include pervious concrete paving, bioretention areas, stormwater planters, rock filter trenches, the EPIC System, an underground cartridge filter system, and hydrodynamic separators.


  • ACEC-MN Engineering Excellence Grand Award – Water Resources, 2010
  • MnSPE Seven Wonders of Engineering Honor Award, 2010
  • Grand Award & National Finalist

CLIENT: University of Minnesota