Empire State Development: Buffalo Bills stadium study is complete

Buffalo Bills

(WIVB) — The state’s Buffalo Bills stadium study is complete, Empire State Development announced Tuesday.

Consultants with AECOM, the engineering firm that conducted the analysis, didn’t recommend either Orchard Park or the downtown Buffalo location for a new stadium.

The study does recommend building a brand new stadium, rather than renovating Highmark Stadium.

According to the study, the cost to renovate the existing stadium in Orchard Park is about $862 million, compared to $1.354 billion for a new stadium at Orchard Park – a difference of about $492 million.

The cost to build the same stadium in Buffalo would be estimated to add an extra $350 million to the project cost, not including the potential cost of relocating residents and businesses, adding a roof to the stadium, or going through the SEQRA process.

According to AECOM, the Bills currently generate about $27 million per year in money for the City of Buffalo, Erie County, and New York State.

“If the Bills were to relocate out of the market, these revenues would be lost,” it reads.

Building a new stadium with the capacity to add a roof in the future would add an estimated $109 million to the cost, the study found. The cost to build a stadium with a roof from the outset is estimated to add $298 million to the cost of the stadium.

The study finds that public investments in infrastructure surrounding a downtown stadium could possibly result in increased property values in the area, resulting in increased property tax collections, about $53 million over the next 30 years.

“AECOM’s report does provide a solid baseline of facts to better inform New York State’s negotiations with the Bills, as well as a public discussion of the best course of action,” a press release from Empire State Development said Tuesday. “The Erie County Legislature is scheduling a series of public meetings to receive comments on a potential stadium project – which will be considered as the state moves forward to shaping a deal with the Bills.”

Read the entire study here:

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