Wednesday November 29, 2023

Deal Close for Bills’ New $1.4B Stadium

  • A deal between the Buffalo Bills, New York State, and Erie County appears close.
  • The state will lead funding for a new $1.4 billion stadium.
Rich Barnes-USA TODAY Sports/Design: Alex Brooks
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Details are falling into place for the Buffalo Bills’ new stadium.

New York State is expected to lead the funding for a $1.4 billion venue in Orchard Park, with contributions from the NFL and team owners Kim and Terry Pegula.

  • New York is expected to chip in around $850 million in its state budget, which will be finalized on April 1. NFL owners could potentially vote on a proposal at the league meetings from March 27-30.
  • The team can take out a $150 million loan from the league, repaid to the other 31 teams through visiting teams’ shares of Bills ticket revenue.
  • To access that loan program, the Pegulas must commit at least $200 million, which can partly come from selling personal seat licenses to season-ticket holders.

The stadium was initially left out of the state’s $216.3 billion budget during negotiations. The current lease expires in 2023.

Shopping Around

The Pegulas have threatened to move the team to another city if they don’t get a deal they like, with Austin, Texas, named as a possible destination.

“Teams have other options,” New York Gov. Kathy Hochul said

The new open-air stadium, planned for the area right next to Highmark Stadium, could open by 2026 and seat 60,000-62,000 — plus another 5,000 standing-room spots.

A survey found that 70% of Bills fans are happy with the stadium plans, though only 33% approved of the decision to have an overhang instead of a roof.

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