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  1. #26

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    Quote Originally Posted by UrbanNebraska View Post
    It will technically be located in the newly dubbed "Capitol District." The decided I-480 was too much of a barrier to include it in the North Downtown neighborhood. It will be located on this parking lot.


    Pretty much can't get a better improvement.
    That's funny. I remember arguing with people on eOmaha like years ago that the 480 bridge was an impediment, which I saw as similar to the Crosstown viaduct here in OKC that we're now removing because locals started to buy a new version of history with the highway "cutting off" downtown, etc. Sounds like the narrative has now taken root in Omaha, so I wonder if your state's department of transportation will also get you on the hook for a $800 million interstate relocation project...

    "Don't do it!!" bwahaha..

  2. #27

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    If we spend $800 million on another transportation project it had better be spent on mass transit! Considering there are $1.5 Billion in Interstate "upgrades" u/c in the Omaha/Lincoln area right now I would dread seeing another large chunk sent to the interstate system.

    On your other point I really think Omaha has done a great job of not concentrating too much on one area and letting others suffer. The Old Market is stronger than ever. 2 apartment buildings are u/c in the OM right now with a 11 floor hotel and 2 more apartment buildings announced. The Old Market is the most truly urban environment in the city, I think our leaders realize the values of that.

    If anything Omaha is letting our newer districts like NoDo suffer. The city council went limp wrist 2 years ago and approved a freaking privately owned parking log go directly across the street from the Urban Outfitters development. . It sucks the life out of the current urban developments.

  3. #28

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    Some North Downtown updates.

    For anyone familiar with the CWS and the Zesto's tradition they will be glad to know Zesto's is currently building a new location by the baseball stadium. It will have Zesto's and a year round "Lids" location on the bottom and an open air party deck on the 2nd floor. No apartment is a bummer, but it is on a pretty small piece of land.




    318 North End was also announced recently. It will be a brewery, retail, office space and apartments. A pretty large building will be rehabbed.

    Here is the current state of the building.


    Here are the renderings.

  4. #29

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    Art Deco renovations. Some of our oldest are being put to new uses.

    This one is Hotel Deco which opened last summer.


    The Barker Building here will be 48 apartments and first floor retail.


    This is the Old Federal Building that will see a $23 million renovation to become a Residence Inn.

  5. #30

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    Quote Originally Posted by Spartan View Post
    That's funny. I remember arguing with people on eOmaha like years ago that the 480 bridge was an impediment, which I saw as similar to the Crosstown viaduct here in OKC that we're now removing because locals started to buy a new version of history with the highway "cutting off" downtown, etc. Sounds like the narrative has now taken root in Omaha, so I wonder if your state's department of transportation will also get you on the hook for a $800 million interstate relocation project...

    "Don't do it!!" bwahaha..
    From the recent construction of the roads it looks like they would be more in favor of a $800 million renovation & widening of the current dispersal loop

  6. #31

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    I love this thread! Keep them coming UrbanNebraska! Seeing what other cities are doing helps put our developments in perspective. I think we should have a thread for all other city developments. It will helps us learn what is new, what's working, what has failed, why it failed, and how our developments can be improved.

  7. #32

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    Nice updates, UrbanNebraska, I second lasomeday. I would be particularly interested in hearing about development controversies in Omaha. What about the streetcar system that Omaha is planning?

  8. #33

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    This is a long post, you've been warned.

    Streetcars have a long history in Omaha. We actually had a very inclusive network of streetcar lines up until March 1955. It covered a 10 mile stretch north and south and a 10 mile stretch east and west. The were all privately owned and made a profit. Then the Chrysler Company bought out all the lines and closed them to create demand for their personal vehicles and busses. A big bummer to think how different Omaha could have looked if our city leaders back then could of seen the benefit of streetcars.

    Anyways the past is past. Today there is a lot of support from city leaders and the corporations for streetcars in Omaha, but the city is very divided on the issue. The city is set up in a very East vs. West rivalry of sorts. 72nd street is the "border" between the east/west, dense/suburban, and liberal/conservative parts of the city. It really is crazy I have never seen anything like it in other cities so distinctly. That creates a very strong anti streetcar group among those living in West O. The say they will be paying for something that they wont see the benefit from, pretty short sighted IMO.

    Even with the rift the city leaders understand the need. We are in the middle of our 6th study over the past 10 years and it is the most inclusive one yet. At first the city wanted to create a line that ran from the airport to the zoo. It would of passed by the baseball stadium, convention center/arena and Old Market. The study suggested implementing the line, but that is a rather low density corridor tons of destinations, but not enough permanent residents along the line so the city decided to pursue other options.

    Then came the midtown/downtown route which in my opinion would be the very best route possible. It would pass by all 5 of our Fortune 500s, Midtown Crossing, The Nebraska Medical Center, the CBD, the Old Market and 10s of thousands of midtown/downtown residents. Win win for everyone.

    And finally now they are studying the largest area yet. This one is huge and would be a game changer. The study has been funded half by the city and half by Mutual of Omaha, Conagra, OPPD and Metro Transit a lot of major players in the city. This is studying adding connections to a $250 million dollar mixed use set to begin construction this fall, University of Nebraska-Omaha, and Aksarben Village(a work in progress mixed use project). This study will finish next summer.

    Basically we are still a ways away and it simply wont happen without federal funding. The ambition and the people donating large sums of money for the studies are the most interesting parts. There is enough corporate and resident support for it to be a success. It all comes down to us being able to convince the Fed to invest in a Metro under a million people.

    And there is public support. This piece of public art commemorating the history of the streetcar in Omaha shows that. This was built entirely by private donations at what used to be the terminus of the old streetcar lines.
    382-full.jpg

  9. #34

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    That's unfortunate if it won't happen without federal funding, but that is something that you guys are obviously in better position than we are to receive.

    Do you guys have a City Hall that likes to bury unfriendly projects in a million studies? Our City Hall is famous for that, and we call it "daze and confuse," which a project being on its 6th study would certainly qualify. One example would be this railroad quiet zone for downtown that the city just isn't keen on, despite pressure from developers, so it's now on its 3rd or 4th study in just a decade.

    If I were you guys, I would take a study (no matter how much is being spent on it) as a bad sign, rather than as a sign of progress, but perhaps you guys work differently and actually conduct studies in good faith.

  10. #35

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    I am tired of studies. I really want them to make a decision and stop dragging us along, but this study by all accounts is different.

    I have been told you cannot even apply for federal funds without this study so it has to be done if the city ever wants streetcars, even if it doesn't happen right away.

    And the even bigger thing for me is that this is the first study the city isn't paying for on it's own. The city is actually paying less than half after the donations from Mutual of Omaha, Nebraska Medical Center and private donations covering the difference.

    Some of the biggest players in the city obviously want it, that is what makes this study stand out to me at least.

  11. #36

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    Ah, so this is the alternatives analysis process.

  12. #37

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    Quote Originally Posted by Spartan View Post
    Ah, so this is the alternatives analysis process.
    Yeah, 18 months long and it is easily 3 times the size of the older studies.

    Here is more or less the study area. http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msid=...32457,0.077333

  13. #38

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    I'm really digging this thread. My husband is stationed up at Offut so I've been spending 5-10 days a month up there. Omaha is a really nice city, clean, and the people are friendly. The Old Market area is what Bricktown should be. We are really looking forward to the CWS, one of the reasons he put Offut on his list!

  14. #39

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    Quote Originally Posted by UrbanNebraska View Post
    Yeah, 18 months long and it is easily 3 times the size of the older studies.

    Here is more or less the study area. http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?msid=...32457,0.077333
    Omaha is so linear, with such a well-defined singular corridor heading west, that it makes a streetcar route almost a no-brainer..just put it down Dodge. Which actually probably has tons of TOD potential especially east of UNO/Dundee.

  15. #40

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    Quote Originally Posted by Spartan View Post
    Omaha is so linear, with such a well-defined singular corridor heading west, that it makes a streetcar route almost a no-brainer..just put it down Dodge. Which actually probably has tons of TOD potential especially east of UNO/Dundee.
    The middle lane of Dodge also changes right of way depending on time of day. Carries eastbound traffic in the morning toward downtown and westbound in the afternoon.

    That makes a really easy solution. Take one lane away have two of traffic each way with a dedicated lane for transit, whether it be streetcar or rapid bus transit. Makes too much sense for me.

  16. #41

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    Quote Originally Posted by UrbanNebraska View Post
    The middle lane of Dodge also changes right of way depending on time of day. Carries eastbound traffic in the morning toward downtown and westbound in the afternoon.

    That makes a really easy solution. Take one lane away have two of traffic each way with a dedicated lane for transit, whether it be streetcar or rapid bus transit. Makes too much sense for me.
    That's why it more than likely won't happen.

  17. #42

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    Old Market development.

    The Old Market has been almost exclusively renovating older buildings up until the past few years and now especially. Now that all buildings have been redone the demand is there for new spaces, exciting stuff happening because of it.

    Completed condo project. jLofts located adjacent, but not "technically" in the Old Market.


    Currently u/c Apartment building. A small 1 floor building holding a Maggie Moo's and Little King(a local sandwich chain) was torn down to build this 3 floor with those two tenants returning and another unnamed restaurant taking the ground floor. 12 apartments above.

    Before


    After


    And the biggest most exciting Old Market project. 159 room Hyatt Place Omaha. It will be the cities first Hyatt Place and will do wonders for the viability of the Old Market.

    The ugly current lot.


    The future finished product. It will have an amazing presence in the area.

  18. #43

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    How long has serious redevelopment been going on in The Old Market? Because if it is less than 20 years and practically all the existing buildings have been renovated, as you say, then that is so much more impressive than the fact that Bricktown HASN'T had all of its buildings renovated in the same time period.

  19. #44

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    Quote Originally Posted by mcca7596 View Post
    How long has serious redevelopment been going on in The Old Market? Because if it is less than 20 years and practically all the existing buildings have been renovated, as you say, then that is so much more impressive than the fact that Bricktown HASN'T had all of its buildings renovated in the same time period.
    It is generally accepted that ~1990 was the "rebirth" of the Old Market. That is right when 1200 Landmark Center as well as ConAgra relocated to Omaha from St. Louis and opened up their riverfront campus across the street from the OM. The retail and dinning pretty much has been there from day one, longer in some cases. The residential aspect didn't really start happening until the late '90s.

    So a little more than 20 years to reach "critical mass" inside the OM. Finally seeing it pushing it's boundaries.

    The Old Market also fostered the "Rows at Soma" 100 unit condo project that started in '05 and just finished it's last unit this winter.

    100 of those metal "mohawks" are directly adjacent to the south of the Old Market.

  20. #45

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    Quote Originally Posted by UrbanNebraska View Post
    The middle lane of Dodge also changes right of way depending on time of day. Carries eastbound traffic in the morning toward downtown and westbound in the afternoon.

    That makes a really easy solution. Take one lane away have two of traffic each way with a dedicated lane for transit, whether it be streetcar or rapid bus transit. Makes too much sense for me.
    You'll only need a dedicated ROW if you go with LRT. It you do streetcar, it CAN share a lane. The only problem then is if it's a single track that has to carry two-way traffic, but that's unlikely to begin with. It will be very difficult to run a significant system on a single track. Also, the exterior lanes are by far the safest, usually--unless you have a large transit plaza in the center median a la St. Charles Streetcar, NOLA.

    (We've been down in the nitty gritty details in our civic streetcar forums, but this is specifically the kind of issues that the AA process is for)

    Also...

  21. #46

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    Quote Originally Posted by UrbanNebraska View Post
    I do declare this your city's best view. I'm not even sure OKC or Dallas have a vantage point that is as great as this. I just wish the camera pane could have been moseyed over just a tad to the right...

    Here's the OKC equivalent of this view (I normally equate Old Market to Bricktown), too bad Will is in the way... grr

  22. #47

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    I will just link this one. It's the best shot of Omaha I have probably ever seen. A guy from the Omaha forum took it so I wont sprawl it out here.

    http://dshawnphotography.com/images/Panorama_1copy.jpg

  23. #48

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    This is really making me envious of the power of organic growth. Omaha seems to be developing very organically, not just throwing down billions on this street corner, billion here, few more billion on this block...paying attention to detail, not just throwing wads of cash and hoping urban problems go away.

  24. #49

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    Quote Originally Posted by Spartan View Post
    This is really making me envious of the power of organic growth. Omaha seems to be developing very organically, not just throwing down billions on this street corner, billion here, few more billion on this block...paying attention to detail, not just throwing wads of cash and hoping urban problems go away.
    It isn't quite fair for me to only show the very best we have to offer. North downtown is beginning to worry me on how it will turn out. Behind our "best" urban development in the area there is a rather large parking area, with an entire paved lot across the street as well. "The Yard" yes they named their for profit parking lot .


    This one shows just how much work there is to do in this part of town.


    Although the entire area north of I-480 was a scrap yard in 2001 all of that is no more than 10 years old.

  25. #50

    Default Re: Omaha Development Update

    Well regardless, you guys don't have an oil boom that is financing an unplannab-ly (new word) huge explosion of downtown development. Those types of people are impossible to deal with, especially compared to the very reasonable leaders of Omaha (ie., Buffett).

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