Bills owner says team in no rush to build new stadium
BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) Buffalo Bills owner Terry Pegula says the team is in no rush to build a new stadium or sell naming rights to its current home.
Pegula said Thursday that the team has time and an existing lease on the current stadium.
When Pegula purchased the team in October 2014, he said the team would build a new stadium despite a $130 million renovation the previous summer. But that doesn't mean it's coming anytime soon.
Pegula and his wife Kim were part of a panel discussion with Boston Bruins owner Jeremy Jacobs and NHL commissioner Gary Bettman.
The Bills agreed on a 10-year, $271 million lease deal in 2012 with New York State and Ere County to keep the team at Ralph Wilson Stadium in Orchard Park. The agreement included a commitment to put aside funds and establish an advisory group to explore the potential of building a new stadium for the franchise.
The first stages of Ralph Wilson Stadium's renovation were completed last fall, months after the building's namesake and original owner passed away.
''From our standpoint with the stadium as Terry mentioned, it's very simple, we're still going through the stadium renovations and we're going to enjoy those,'' said Bills managing partner Russ Brandon, who said there was no timetable for a stadium decision.
''The lease gives us the opportunity to take a quantitative and holistic view of what the future may hold and educate ourselves on subjects related to that but we're very comfortable and very pleased with Ralph Wilson Stadium and the relationship we have with both the county and the state,'' he said.
The upgrades include new fan-friendly amenities, such as larger concessions stands, a sports bar, easier access into the stadium and wider concourses.
The key renovations include 3 million feet of linear cable to improve communications and technology in the stadium. There are also two new video boards and 53 more entry points.
Wilson refused to sell naming rights to the stadium for a second time despite the money it could bring into the team, and the Pegulas plan on honoring that.
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