It’s almost like a mandate from the NFL. The Buffalo Bills need a new stadium, but it’s about more than concrete and location; it’s about the Bills culture.
Buffalo has always had a blue-collar image, and that could be in danger if the Stadium is put in the wrong location. Bills fans love to park their cars, and open the beers. Most fans have had the experience of sitting outside Ralph Wilson Stadium for hours before kickoff. The smell of food on the grill, and the sound of your fellow Bills fans yelling and just having a good time.
Well, that could all come to an end if the Stadium is put downtown. Today’s NFL is not geared toward that kind of fan or experience. It’s not about you or me sitting in a $40 seat and just being a fan. It’s about the big picture, and filling the bank accounts of all parties involved. A downtown stadium may seem to be a strong choice, and it does have its merits. It would help local bars, and hotels.
Having a water front stadium would most likely require the addition of some kind of mass transit. I can’t see a location that could support the traffic a Bills game generates, and putting a stadium in Niagara Falls is simply one of the worst ideas I have heard in a long time. Niagara Falls is not Buffalo and it is not a central location. I will say for the Canadian fans Niagara Falls may be a good choice, but sorry. It’s not your team it’s ours.
So, what to do? There is not going to be a solution that makes everyone happy, and my only hope is the Bills stay in Erie County. I really do not care where in Erie County they go, but it’s not the Buffalo Bills in Niagara or any other County.
Like I said earlier this stadium could change more than how we get to the game, it could change the Bills into just another cog in the NFL machine. If done wrong the die-hard fan could be on the outside looking in, and the corporations and big shots will be sitting in our seats. It’s going to come down to the lesser of two evils and I don’t think fans really have a say in this; hopefully the Buffalo Bills understand this is about more than a new stadium.