SBD/January 7, 2013/Facilities

New Technology Stands Out Among $130M In Improvements At Ralph Wilson Stadium

Construction at Ralph Wilson Stadium should wrap up by late '15
At Ralph Wilson Stadium, $130M will not buy a "major overhaul of the 40-year-old stadium," according to Denise Jewell Gee of the BUFFALO NEWS. Erie County Deputy Exec Richard Tobe said, "It's not a 'wow,' it's to upgrade it, make it functional, make it work." But SportsCorp President Marc Ganis said that what "stands out ... is putting $25.3 million into new technology in the stadium, including a second high-definition video display board at a cost of $8.8 million and updating the way data can be distributed throughout the stadium." Tobe said that what fans will "notice most is the upgraded technology that will increase opportunities for high-definition television throughout the stadium." Gee noted design work "is not yet complete, but among the most visible changes will be an Abbott Road plaza that will feed fans into the stadium area." Inside the stadium, "suites, restrooms and concession stands will be updated." New club seats "will replace an old press box." The main concourse on the east end of the stadium will "be expanded and new 'destination concession and restroom areas' will be added to the upper concourse." Erie County Public Works Commissioner John Loffredo said that county officials "hope some construction can begin later this year, with the bulk of the work ... starting in 2014 and wrapping up by late 2015" (BUFFALO NEWS, 1/6).

SAFE AND SECURE: In Buffalo, Mark Gaughan wrote Bills President & CEO Russ Brandon "doesn't have to worry about anyone going over his head or behind his back." He has "total job security until the team is sold, which means he's set for roughly the next seven years." That will be the "optimal time for the Bills to be sold, because the penalty for moving the team essentially goes away after seven years under the terms of the new lease agreement." If the football team "fails, it will be the coach or GM who take the fall, not Brandon" (BUFFALO NEWS, 1/6).
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