Apr 2


Roundup of Buffalo Bills stadium coverage

Investigative Post has written extensively on the project. Here's a sampling of our major reports from the past three years.

Image courtesy of WGRZ.

Now seems like a good time to review our reporting on the Bills’ new $1.7 billion stadium, slated to open in 2026. Most of the following stories were reported by J. Dale Shoemaker and Mark Scheer. 

Taxpayer subsidies: Subsidies will top $1 billion between construction and maintenance and go well beyond what New York State typically spends on stadiums and arenas or what taxpayers spend in most other states. The lease will not provide Erie County taxpayers with any relief for maintenance and other ongoing stadium costs. 

Economic impact: Stadiums typically generate little new economic activity, about as much as a Target store. Plans do not include ancillary development common to many stadium projects.

Lease: It’s not ironclad and there’s a real danger the team could relocate upon Terry Pegula’s passing because of inheritance laws. In fact, the lease has an easier escape clause than most other stadium leases negotiated in recent years. (Pegula just turned 73 years old. It’s a 30-year lease.)

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Environmental impact: Erie County decides to skip a study of the stadium’s environmental impact even though other stadium and arena projects built in the state since the 1980s have undergone such a review. The result: the stadium design falls short of the green standards found in many other new stadiums and arenas.

Community benefits agreement: How they’ve worked elsewhere and the shortcomings of the one negotiated here

Government secrecy: Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz attempts to suppress a report on the condition of Highmark Stadium; Investigative Post sues to make the findings public. Poloncarz demands that officials negotiating the community benefits agreement sign a non-disclosure agreement. The administration of Gov. Kathy Hochul releases a stadium feasibility study after Investigative Post sues.

We’re continuing to follow the story. Stay tuned.

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