Photo taken from the upper level of New Era Field during a Buffalo Bills game. 

Image Credit: Michael - Flickr (CC BY 2.0)

Just three years ago, the Buffalo Bills organization renovated New Era Field, formerly Ralph Wilson Stadium; a $130 million project. The team’s lease with the stadium will expire in 2023 and it is already the fourth oldest stadium in the NFL behind Soldier Field (Chicago Bears), Lambeau Field (Green Bay Packers) and Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum (Los Angeles Rams). Talks for a new stadium have been sporadic but will likely pick up speed over the next two years.

Buffalo Bills owner Terry Pegula is in no hurry to build a new stadium at the moment due to the rather recent renovations to New Era Field. Additionally, Pegula would like to see the Bills return to their 1990’s dominance before really discussing the construction of a new stadium and asking for the public dollars needed to build it. The Buffalo Bills have not made the NFL playoffs in seventeen years; the New England Patriots have virtually dominated the AFC-East during that time period.

Buffalo-based New Era Cap Company purchased the naming rights to Ralph Wilson Stadium just before the 2016 NFL season. New Era will hold the first rights of refusal for the Buffalo Bills’ new stadium when it is built. That means that they will get the first chance to solidify a new naming rights agreement for the new stadium. Since 2014, a working group of key figures in the Buffalo area have been working to determine the best location for the new stadium and came up with several possibilities including

  • The team’s current stadium site in Orchard Park, New York.
  • Niagara Falls.
  • The Buffalo Outer Harbor.
  • Along Ohio Street near the Buffalo River.
  • Two different plots of land adjacent to the KeyBank Center, home of the NHL’s Buffalo Sabres.
  • Adjacent to Coca-Cola Field, home of the Buffalo Bisons (minor league baseball team).
  • Former site of the Seneca Mall in West Seneca, New York.
  • A plot of land near Interstate 90 in Batavia, New York.
  • Former site of a steel plant in Lackawanna, New York.


That working group included people such as Russ Brandon and Jeff Littman of the Buffalo Bills, the Pegula family and Senator Charles Schumer. When the new stadium is built, it will be interesting to see whether it will be an indoor or outdoor venue. The winters are brutal in Buffalo, New York but something tells me the legendary Buffalo Bills fans enjoy games in the snow. Either way, the Buffalo Bills will have many new opportunities for additional revenue streams when the new stadium is finally standing.




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