USA: It is official, a new stadium will stand in Buffalo

source:; author: Rafał Zagrobelny

USA: It is official, a new stadium will stand in Buffalo First of all: the Bills will stay in Buffalo. Secondly: the club will move to a new venue. The team owners, NFL as well as state and local authorities have agreed to build a $1.4 billion stadium in Orchard Park.


The new facility will be constructed near the Bills current venue, Highmark Stadium, which has been home to the club from the state of New York since 1973. The old arena has obviously undergone several upgrades through the decades, but today it stands out from the modern facilities that have sprung up in the NFL in recent years.

Highmark Stadium© Paul Solly

The capacity of the stadium is expected to be around 62,000 seats. This is nearly 10,000 fewer seats than at the current arena. The investment budget includes landscaping around the new arena, construction of a parking lot for fans and demolition of Highmark Stadium

A new stadium for the Bills will be built through a public-private partnership. A stream of $850 million will flow from taxpayer funds. Gov. Kathy Hochul has scheduled $600 million for that purpose in the state budget, which has already been officially approved. The remaining 250 million will come from Erie County.

Highmark Stadium© Chess REO (CC)

NFL authorities have confirmed in turn a total of $550 million, consisting of $350 million from Bills’ owners Terry and Kim Pegula and a $200 million loan from the NFL. This is the split that all parties agreed to as a result of negotiations. Local authorities reportedly made concessions when Pegula threatened to move the club to a different location.

Ultimately, as a result of the agreements and the split of financial responsibility for the investment, the Bills will stay in New York State for the next 30 years. According to the state, the stadium project is expected to create about 10,000 jobs and the Bills will still generate $27 million a year in direct revenue, sales and use taxes for the state, Erie County and the city of Buffalo.

Highmark Stadium© Chess REO (CC)

Interestingly, not everyone likes the vision of building the stadium. Actually, it is not the idea itself, but the scope of financing the facility by the state. Residents were most critical of such plans in a recent survey.

The idea of giving $850 million in public funds to the new Buffalo Bills facility was supported by only 22% of New York State respondents, while 55% were opposed. Even in Buffalo, not everyone opts for such an idea. The majority support the idea, 58% of respondents to be exact, but 31% of them are negative about the plan.

Highmark Stadium© Chess REO (CC)

It is controversial that never before did taxpayers subsidise the construction of a sports facility on such a scale. The previous record belonged to Allegiant Stadium, whose construction was supported by $750 million. That's $100 million less than the new Bills facility. The bitterness is increased by the fact that Kim and Terry Pegula are ranked 8th on the list of the richest NFL club owners. Their assets are worth approximately $7 billion dollars.

In the meantime it has been reported that Populous studio is to design a new Bills stadium. We can expect renderings of the arena in about four to six months.