During a statewide tour in the middle of August, the Buffalo Bills home, New Era Field, was visited by the New York State Carl Heastie. Heastie expressed that he enjoys statewide visits since during these kinds of tours, he can visit different types of places where the nation pulls together.
Buffalo is one of those places where people are brought together to enjoy life. If it is not New Era Park where they celebrate the live-action of the enormous Bills, it is at the Blackthorn Restaurant and Pub where they are enjoying the game over a plate of the best local treats. Heastie said that the cities in the state are continually growing and that the people gathering at these places are the ones who find the necessary resources and tools to support these growing communities. Western New Yorkers are known for being very much invested in the communities living in their districts, and according to Pat Burke, Assemblyman, the state will always be committed to reinvesting into these communities.
Improving Fan Experiences
During Burke and Heastie’s visit to New Era Field, they were joined by the Assembly Majority Leader, Crystal Peoples-Stokes. During 2013 it was decided that as part of the 10-year lease agreement between the Bills organization and the Erie County and New York state, to keep the Bills in Buffalo, a cash injection will be contributed by these different parties to improve the fan experience for Bills fans at New Era Field. This entailed the inclusion of new technology as well as building the west end plaza and some further extensions.
Discussing the Needs of The Stadium
During the visit, the Bills were away in South Carolina for their practice session against the Carolina Panthers. The tour also served as an opportunity to discuss the needs of the stadium with Buffalo Bills’ owners, Terry and Kim Pegula. During the visit, an entire tour to determine the needs of the stadium was concluded. The Bills still have a lease agreement to play at the stadium until 2022, but questions concerning what will happen after that remains unanswered. Mark Poloncarz, Erie County Executive was included in the tour determining the needs of the stadium. According to the Erie County DPW, the current estimate is that the structure is still able to last for another 25 to 30 years if maintenance is kept on track and are being done regularly. The questions regarding for how long the Bills will still be able to play in New Era and whether they will have to move to a new stadium or even out of Buffalo has been a hot topic for a while already. Whether this visit is going to bring any new developments to this situation, will have to be seen.