Late last week, Thad Brown of News 8 WROC broke the news that the Buffalo Bills are planning a new open-air stadium in Orchard Park, NY.
An agency co-owned by Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has reportedly been hired by the Buffalo Bills to represent the team in efforts to build a new stadium.
Venues Now reports Legends Global Planning has been selected by the Bills. The lease at Highmark Stadium expires in 2023. The Bills have also chosen Legends Global Sales to represent the team for sponsorship and premium seat sales for any new stadium.
“Considering it takes three to five years to develop an NFL facility from design to construction, the Bills would need to sign an extension at their current stadium, which opened in 1973 and stands among the league’s oldest venues,” reports Venues Now.Marc Ganis of SportsCorp Ltd.
“The Buffalo Bills need a new stadium. I mean, if anybody keeps trying to kick the can down the road, it’s really not a solution.”
Ganis is an industry expert who has worked on more than two dozen successful sports facility projects similar to this one. Heinz Field in Pittsburgh is just one example.
“They are arguably the best firm to handle this for the Bills,” Ganis said of Legends Global Sales, the company reported to be partnering with the Bills.
The Bills’ current lease at Highmark Stadium expires in 2023. The team could extend the lease with Erie County and New York, but the Bills are prepared to consider other options for home games, including Toronto and Penn State, Brown reports.
The reports of the Bills possibly playing elsewhere when their lease is up in 2023, have some mixed reactions from the fans. I created a poll on Twitter to see how fans feel about this.
— KIETHDOMONII (@kieth_domon) June 19, 2021
I believe the most realistic option if there is a gap between the expiration of the current lease and the opening of a new stadium would be to work out an extension the county to continue playing at Highmark Stadium.
According to the Bills, the meeting was held at Highmark Stadium in Orchard Park to “outline a plan based on the independent study the organization conducted about the future stadium and arena projects in Western New York.”
The Bills had conducted an independent market study gauging, among other things, what fans preferred and would be willing to pay for.
Ganis said like other new stadiums, private seat licenses (PSLs) and other methods could be used and adapted for the Buffalo market, similar to what was done in Pittsburgh.
“So that it’s not pulling teeth, so it isn’t people having to mortgage their homes to buy Buffalo Bills tickets, and those are some of the studies that if they haven’t already been done by the Pegulas, I assure you they will be done shortly.”Marc Ganis
Back in 2018, Pegula Sports and Entertainment hired a company to help them determine the best options for the Bills’ stadium moving forward, as well as potential renovations for the KeyBank Center, where the Sabres and Bandits play.
There has been an argument for a while now between fans whether to have an open-air stadium or have a dome/retractable roof. The arguments for an open-air stadium are that in the winter months in Buffalo, there could be a home-field advantage. The counterpoint to that is, with a closed stadium, you can hold other events during the winter months besides football games.
For the record: Building a new #Bills stadium (regardless of WNY location, but especially if it remains in Orchard Park) without a dome/retractable roof would be a giant misstep.
— Chris Trapasso (@ChrisTrapasso) June 18, 2021
The Bills have played at their current stadium since 1973.
Who do you want to see a new stadium in Orchard Park? Should they look to move the stadium to downtown Buffalo? Are you for an open-air stadium or prefer a dome or retractable roof? Let me know in the comments below or reach out to me on Twitter.
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