The Buffalo Bills Won’t Renew Lease Without a New Stadium Deal
The Buffalo Bills are about to take the field at Highmark Stadium for the team's regular-season home opener in 10 days when they play the Pittsburgh Steelers on Sunday, September 12th.
However, the new stadium discussion has dominated fans' minds over recent weeks, and the report from earlier this week that the Bills have proposed a $1.4 billion stadium that would be built across the street from the current stadium in Orchard Park.
Now, further developments have arisen in the new stadium discussions.
According to John Wawrow of the AP, the Bills will not renew their current lease which is set to expire in July of 2023, without a new stadium deal in place.
While talk of relocation has not been brought up specifically, Pegula Sports and Entertainment senior vice president Ron Raccuia did not rule out the possibility by using the phrase "yet," when discussing the topic with WBEN.
Raccuia said right now, everyone is concerned about getting together and getting a solution in terms of a new stadium and continue with negotiations.
The price, size, and location were confirmed by Raccuia to be a 60-62,000 seat stadium that would cost $1.4 billion which would be built in Orchard Park.
The venture would be a public-private partnership, but there is no word on exactly how much taxpayer money would go into the cost.
The 2023 expiration of the lease is interesting because it puts a deadline on negotiations and the big question of "what happens if a deal isn't struck by then?"
Would the Bills play elsewhere? Would they relocate if a deal isn't struck by then? That remains to be seen but by all accounts, the Bills, county, and state are working to keep the Bills in Buffalo.
If a deal isn't reached before the lease expires, the waters become much muddier, there's no doubt about that.