When speaking to reporters on Wednesday, Buffalo Bills owner Terry Pegula indicated that the team is not in the process of planning a new stadium.
New Era Field originally opened in 1973, and there was some indication last year that NFL officials would like to see the Bills pursue a new facility. That has prompted some discussion about the team’s stadium situation, but the Bills are currently committed to New Era Field through 2023.
Even though the terms of the agreement provide the Bills with an out clause several years before that date, Pegula does not seemed inclined to exercise that clause. He also points to recent renovations to New Era Field, and says that team has a long ways to go before a plan for a new stadium starts taking shape. More from The Buffalo News:
“That’s a contractual obligation,” Pegula said. “That’s my stance on it. This is 2017, so we’ve got a long ways to go before we start thinking about anything besides where we’re at now.”
When a reporter pointed out that the Bills have an out clause in 2020 and asked if he would ever consider using it, Pegula responded, “Where we going to go?”
Pegula’s wife and Bills co-owner Kim Pegula told WKBW-TV last week that talks about a new stadium with state officials were “forthcoming.” Terry Pegula made it sound as if that were news to him.
“I don’t know when she said that,” Pegula said. “But we just got through with a remodeling and major contribution from the state of New York in the stadium. I feel that, in light of that, we’re not in any planning session at all right now for a new stadium. We’re still enjoying what’s been done to New Era Field.”
There have been indications that the Bills want to focus for now on improving their on-field product, after finishing 7-9 last year and missing the playoffs for the 17th straight season. New Era Field will enter the 2017 season as the NFL’s sixth-oldest stadium.
Image courtesy Buffalo Bills.