BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) — Just one week after the state released its study on the Buffalo Bills stadium, the Common Council’s Finance Committee held a public hearing to discuss the idea of building the team’s new home downtown. The engineering firm that conducted the study recommended building a brand new stadium but did not recommend either Orchard Park or Downtown Buffalo for the location.
“I don’t look at this as ‘suburbs versus the city,'” said Councilmember David Rivera. “A strong Buffalo is a strong Orchard Park.”
Some council members have been advocating to build in the City of Buffalo, specifically South Park Avenue and Louisiana Street. But, as Councilmember Mitch Nowakowski pointed out, that site would displace hundreds of people living in that area. One woman who lives in that neighborhood said she’s upset that people aren’t thinking of her neighbors.
“There’s a future for the stadium outside of Orchard Park, I just do not think it should come at the cost of 600 lives,” she said. “These are not strangers. There are people I know that I’ve grown up with.”
Buffalo developers Rocco Termini and Doug Jemal also spoke at the hearing, though they had different views. Termini said a downtown stadium would be the best thing to happen to the city, while Jemal said he’s not willing to gamble away the Bills and fight the Pegulas to build downtown.
The Erie County Legislature will also hold public hearings on the Bills stadium. You can find details about where and when these meetings will be online.