$1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

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$1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby iamjacobm » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:41 pm

http://www.ketv.com/news/omahas-transportation-infrastructure-needs-total-11-billion-by-2040-report-says/33484398

The City of Omaha has $1.1 billion in transportation infrastructure needs by 2040, according to a transportation analysis.

On Tuesday, the Omaha City Council received a briefing on transportation needs through a joint effort between Lamp Rynearson, HDR and Olsson Associates.

The report breaks down to about $54 million in annual needs for new transportation projects. That does not include maintenance.

Right now, the city allocates around $15 million to new transportation projects annually.

Michael McMeekin, president of Lamp Rynearson, presented part of the report, saying the state's upcoming gas tax revenue will not solve the funding problem.

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby iamjacobm » Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:44 pm

The findings of this report are so large it is nearly funny. Paving our way to oblivion is going to bankrupt this city.

Finding new ways to move people and getting people living on existing infrastructure isn't just some "millennial" fad. Our city's future is depending on it.

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby daveoma » Tue Jun 09, 2015 8:56 pm

iamjacobm wrote:The findings of this report are so large it is nearly funny. Paving our way to oblivion is going to bankrupt this city.

Finding new ways to move people and getting people living on existing infrastructure isn't just some "millennial" fad. Our city's future is depending on it.

Totally agree! I really hope that those entrenched in the old car-centric paradigm have the courage to invest in a more efficient future by funding mass transit. Also building suburbs and freeways destroys farmland. I say build up, not out.

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby S33 » Thu Jun 11, 2015 9:20 am

daveoma wrote:
iamjacobm wrote:The findings of this report are so large it is nearly funny. Paving our way to oblivion is going to bankrupt this city.

Finding new ways to move people and getting people living on existing infrastructure isn't just some "millennial" fad. Our city's future is depending on it.

Totally agree! I really hope that those entrenched in the old car-centric paradigm have the courage to invest in a more efficient future by funding mass transit. Also building suburbs and freeways destroys farmland. I say build up, not out.

There's already too much farmable land being utilized in this country, as it is now. It's part of the reason why agriculture production is so heavily subsidized. I would probably focus my arguments more in the sustainability and funding areas.

That said, there will absolutely have to be a southern loop or beltway to divert the thru-truck traffic, getting them out of the city, as much as possible.

So count on that happening, at least some day down the road.

Absolutely massive oil fields are being discovered all over the globe, the world's largest right off the coast of Scotland, has yet to even be developed. Many other oil fields around the globe, including Middle East, Africa, Latin America, Australia, Coastal US, the Arctic, and so on, also remain untouched, due to political and social strife, or they were simply recently discovered.

A lot of experts predict we may be burning this fossil fuel in throw away quantities for another 200 years and beyond, if our technology is only adapting to available natural resources.

Cars aren't going anywhere, and I would expect the interstate system to grow by as much as 25 percent in the next 50 years.
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby MTO » Thu Nov 26, 2015 1:31 pm

The long range transportation plan 2040 was approved by MAPA officials on October 7th. And good news I browsed through it and saw no funds for any new freeways.

http://www.mapacog.org/long-range-transportation-planning
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby Taco » Thu Nov 26, 2015 3:18 pm

No more new highways! A better busing system! This is what the people want.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/won ... ange-that/

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby HR Paperstacks » Thu Nov 26, 2015 3:22 pm

No funds yet, but the beltway is still illustrated in at least one place.

There's also mention of making Maple, Industral, 144th and 180th six lanes.

But they are starting to focus on alternate transportation options more and increasing density which is good.

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby MTO » Thu Nov 26, 2015 3:37 pm

Yeah I noticed that, a density focus is a great trend to see in Our planning agencies. But I still think it's selfish for us density types to poopoo any bypasses just because we have a streetcar fetish not everyone wants to live in the interior.
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby PotatoeEatsFish » Fri Nov 27, 2015 12:41 am

With all the baby boomers dying off we may actually start to care about transportation. :lol:
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby bigredmed » Fri Nov 27, 2015 7:32 am

PotatoeEatsFish wrote:With all the baby boomers dying off we may actually start to care about transportation. :lol:


The generation that gave birth to the baby boomers was the one who gave birth to urban sprawl. They came home from the wars and were simply tired of living in urban crampedness. Dad talks about his abiding hatred for living in apartments. He was driven to have a house before I was born and to never live in an apartment again. One of the driving influences of that generation was the fraction that had grown up in what urban hipsters think of as coolness personified. Except there are not they apartments that today are filled with touque wearing dudes and earnest young women who are channelling their SJW tendencies into a public sector job or working at an NGO, They were apartments where a family of 4-6 people lived and you were forced to be super quiet or get evicted (so as children, that generation loathed these places as the home of getting in trouble for playing with their toys). The other half were people who lived on farms or in small (and no longer economically viable) towns who had memories of a childhood full of wide open spaces and who looked at these apartments, now so prized, with horror of the thought of their kids living in what seemed to them to be run down prison blocks.

The millenials grew up in the burbs where the distances between friends was a problem and your access to the good mall determined whether you could have fun, buy good clothes, meet up with the kids, etc. The burbs are not as cool in the eye of an adult who looks at them and remembers driving 10 miles to the good mall (because the one that is closer is also empty). These people look at downtown and see lots of stuff I can walk to. That to them is the same paradise that my father saw in the burb they now hate.

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby mcarch » Tue Dec 01, 2015 4:13 pm

Is there a link to the report?

Correction: The link is in this thread at the top. That's what I get for viewing the site when I'm falling asleep!

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby Seth » Thu Dec 10, 2015 1:53 pm

bigredmed wrote:The generation that gave birth to the baby boomers was the one who gave birth to urban sprawl. They came home from the wars and were simply tired of living in urban crampedness. Dad talks about his abiding hatred for living in apartments. He was driven to have a house before I was born and to never live in an apartment again. One of the driving influences of that generation was the fraction that had grown up in what urban hipsters think of as coolness personified. Except there are not they apartments that today are filled with touque wearing dudes and earnest young women who are channelling their SJW tendencies into a public sector job or working at an NGO, They were apartments where a family of 4-6 people lived and you were forced to be super quiet or get evicted (so as children, that generation loathed these places as the home of getting in trouble for playing with their toys). The other half were people who lived on farms or in small (and no longer economically viable) towns who had memories of a childhood full of wide open spaces and who looked at these apartments, now so prized, with horror of the thought of their kids living in what seemed to them to be run down prison blocks.

The millenials grew up in the burbs where the distances between friends was a problem and your access to the good mall determined whether you could have fun, buy good clothes, meet up with the kids, etc. The burbs are not as cool in the eye of an adult who looks at them and remembers driving 10 miles to the good mall (because the one that is closer is also empty). These people look at downtown and see lots of stuff I can walk to. That to them is the same paradise that my father saw in the burb they now hate.


I quite agree. I think the next decades are going to see a lot more diversity in new housing investment and neighborhoods than thin the past. It's not going to be majority super-dense housing like it was 100 years ago, or spread-out suburbs and exurbs like the past 50 years, but a more equal mix, and I think that's a good thing. There is going to be more choice for quality housing across the density spectrum, especially as old neighborhoods are revitalized and more and more infill housing is constructed. I think the new trends towards owner-occupied row houses and denser single-family are going to become more prevalent, as people seek more urban living, but still want to have ownership and privacy.

The transportation planning needs to adapt to this and support it, not be a hindrance. Just as the past 50 years of transportation policy has made suburban and exurban housing possible (and economical), it needs to adapt to new desires for more urban living. This needs to include modes of transportation that complement more diverse residential living, such as bike infrastructure, better busing, and when worth while, streetcars and light rail.

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby michaelsjewel » Fri Dec 18, 2015 6:21 pm

There may not be funding now, but it the beltway is considered necessary to alleviate congestion, especially when it comes to truck traffic. Omaha is kind of a future mess in the making. The fact that you have I-80 the really only freeway across the city: I say this, because this will hinder DT omaha growth because 480 can only dump so many cars onto 80... there's no 580 that was supposed to be where dodge/cass run now (which would've prevented this future problem) - so 80 will continuously have to handle more traffic. Solution: a beltway to take thru traffic off of the I-80. Think of the fact that in this report they mention that truck traffic will increase 80% alone. That's going to be a huge demand on our roads. We simply cannot keep adding lanes upon lanes on 80 as there's no room. A lot of this traffic could be diverted out of the core that want to drive through Omaha anyways as 80 is one of the longest freeways in the nation connecting San Fran with NYC. There needs to be a mix yes, but you cannot simply say that the beltway doesn't serve a huge purpose of helping the city out in the long run. If we forget it, you may as well spell a dark future for Omaha. You don't have to worry about suburban sprawl hurting us too much, it grows anyhow and Omaha isn't landlocked yet (we just annex everything which keeps tax revenue coming in).

The NDOR did a horrible job on widening the interstate in common sense purposes. They added 2 lanes to I-80 but have it end right after 60th. Wouldn't the smarter solution be to have that lane end as an exit only for one of the busiest exits: 72nd? All these lanes do is add space for the existing parking lot that is rush hour. Same thing with 80 on to 84th going east....why have it end before 84th? this one isn't as severe, but make it an exit only. At least when they widened northbound 680 they did something right.

Nebraska is a build as you go state vs planning ahead. It's going to hurt us in the long run. Mass transit should come about but at this point, we aren't a large enough city yet to even make it profitable, and it's more expensive and brings less revenue and bang for your buck back than a freeway does. It's not opinion, it's straight up facts. Only cities large enough like Chicago or NYC or even LA can pull off trains to make them profitable because of the mass amount of commuters. Omaha may get there one day, but please don't shun the idea of roads that will help us in the long run. Omaha needs to work on building for the future, not just build it after we already needed it 10 years ago.
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby michaelsjewel » Fri Dec 18, 2015 6:26 pm

Also, instead of needed all the funds for a beltway or major illustrative project as listed, they should build them little bit at a time. This would allow for small funding to go toward it and to build parts at a time instead of as a hole. Houston is doing this for their new beltway, in sections at a time. For sure, Sarpy county should connect hwy 34 bridge across to 80 by Gretna - then work on the section north to hwy 6 ...at min
NW side could be a way future project.
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby HR Paperstacks » Sat Dec 19, 2015 1:08 pm

I agree we need to beltway. While we all want other options to alleviate congestion, this city is not getting away from automobile traffic anytime soon. They can only widen I-80 so much. What it is right now around 480 is kind of crazy - seven lanes west, six east.

The thing about the west portion of the beltway is it's in a floodplain. So would sprawl around there be much of a problem?

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby MTO » Sat Dec 19, 2015 5:44 pm

You know I get the build as we go method there are only 2 million here but not even planning for the future system is asinine. It's already too late to build between Gretna and Omaha now they'll have to go around which will cost that much more. And there's no planning for a south bypass other than them saying they need to start thinking about thinking about it. Procrastinating is only going to egsaserbate the inevitable.
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby daveoma » Sat Dec 19, 2015 11:08 pm

michaelsjewel wrote:There may not be funding now, but it the beltway is considered necessary to alleviate congestion, especially when it comes to truck traffic. Omaha is kind of a future mess in the making. The fact that you have I-80 the really only freeway across the city: I say this, because this will hinder DT omaha growth because 480 can only dump so many cars onto 80... there's no 580 that was supposed to be where dodge/cass run now (which would've prevented this future problem) - so 80 will continuously have to handle more traffic. Solution: a beltway to take thru traffic off of the I-80. Think of the fact that in this report they mention that truck traffic will increase 80% alone. That's going to be a huge demand on our roads. We simply cannot keep adding lanes upon lanes on 80 as there's no room. A lot of this traffic could be diverted out of the core that want to drive through Omaha anyways as 80 is one of the longest freeways in the nation connecting San Fran with NYC. There needs to be a mix yes, but you cannot simply say that the beltway doesn't serve a huge purpose of helping the city out in the long run. If we forget it, you may as well spell a dark future for Omaha. You don't have to worry about suburban sprawl hurting us too much, it grows anyhow and Omaha isn't landlocked yet (we just annex everything which keeps tax revenue coming in).

The NDOR did a horrible job on widening the interstate in common sense purposes. They added 2 lanes to I-80 but have it end right after 60th. Wouldn't the smarter solution be to have that lane end as an exit only for one of the busiest exits: 72nd? All these lanes do is add space for the existing parking lot that is rush hour. Same thing with 80 on to 84th going east....why have it end before 84th? this one isn't as severe, but make it an exit only. At least when they widened northbound 680 they did something right.

Nebraska is a build as you go state vs planning ahead. It's going to hurt us in the long run. Mass transit should come about but at this point, we aren't a large enough city yet to even make it profitable, and it's more expensive and brings less revenue and bang for your buck back than a freeway does. It's not opinion, it's straight up facts. Only cities large enough like Chicago or NYC or even LA can pull off trains to make them profitable because of the mass amount of commuters. Omaha may get there one day, but please don't shun the idea of roads that will help us in the long run. Omaha needs to work on building for the future, not just build it after we already needed it 10 years ago.


This argument is totally valid...if it were 1955. :banghead:

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby MTO » Sun Dec 20, 2015 11:46 am

daveoma wrote:
michaelsjewel wrote:There may not be funding now, but it the beltway is considered necessary to alleviate congestion, especially when it comes to truck traffic. Omaha is kind of a future mess in the making. The fact that you have I-80 the really only freeway across the city: I say this, because this will hinder DT omaha growth because 480 can only dump so many cars onto 80... there's no 580 that was supposed to be where dodge/cass run now (which would've prevented this future problem) - so 80 will continuously have to handle more traffic. Solution: a beltway to take thru traffic off of the I-80. Think of the fact that in this report they mention that truck traffic will increase 80% alone. That's going to be a huge demand on our roads. We simply cannot keep adding lanes upon lanes on 80 as there's no room. A lot of this traffic could be diverted out of the core that want to drive through Omaha anyways as 80 is one of the longest freeways in the nation connecting San Fran with NYC. There needs to be a mix yes, but you cannot simply say that the beltway doesn't serve a huge purpose of helping the city out in the long run. If we forget it, you may as well spell a dark future for Omaha. You don't have to worry about suburban sprawl hurting us too much, it grows anyhow and Omaha isn't landlocked yet (we just annex everything which keeps tax revenue coming in).

The NDOR did a horrible job on widening the interstate in common sense purposes. They added 2 lanes to I-80 but have it end right after 60th. Wouldn't the smarter solution be to have that lane end as an exit only for one of the busiest exits: 72nd? All these lanes do is add space for the existing parking lot that is rush hour. Same thing with 80 on to 84th going east....why have it end before 84th? this one isn't as severe, but make it an exit only. At least when they widened northbound 680 they did something right.

Nebraska is a build as you go state vs planning ahead. It's going to hurt us in the long run. Mass transit should come about but at this point, we aren't a large enough city yet to even make it profitable, and it's more expensive and brings less revenue and bang for your buck back than a freeway does. It's not opinion, it's straight up facts. Only cities large enough like Chicago or NYC or even LA can pull off trains to make them profitable because of the mass amount of commuters. Omaha may get there one day, but please don't shun the idea of roads that will help us in the long run. Omaha needs to work on building for the future, not just build it after we already needed it 10 years ago.


This argument is totally valid...if it were 1955. :banghead:


Try not to let your mass transit lust one track you.
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby TitosBuritoBarn » Mon Dec 21, 2015 2:42 pm

michaelsjewel wrote:There may not be funding now, but it the beltway is considered necessary to alleviate congestion, especially when it comes to truck traffic. Omaha is kind of a future mess in the making. The fact that you have I-80 the really only freeway across the city: I say this, because this will hinder DT omaha growth because 480 can only dump so many cars onto 80... there's no 580 that was supposed to be where dodge/cass run now (which would've prevented this future problem) - so 80 will continuously have to handle more traffic. Solution: a beltway to take thru traffic off of the I-80. Think of the fact that in this report they mention that truck traffic will increase 80% alone. That's going to be a huge demand on our roads. We simply cannot keep adding lanes upon lanes on 80 as there's no room. A lot of this traffic could be diverted out of the core that want to drive through Omaha anyways as 80 is one of the longest freeways in the nation connecting San Fran with NYC. There needs to be a mix yes, but you cannot simply say that the beltway doesn't serve a huge purpose of helping the city out in the long run. If we forget it, you may as well spell a dark future for Omaha. You don't have to worry about suburban sprawl hurting us too much, it grows anyhow and Omaha isn't landlocked yet (we just annex everything which keeps tax revenue coming in).


Adding freeway capacity usually does little for congestion. This article discusses a $2.3 billion freeway expansion in the Houston area that alleviated congestion temporarily before it reached capacity again. Travel times increased by 13 minutes in the morning and 19 minutes in the evening over the course of two years. Two. http://usa.streetsblog.org/2015/12/16/lobbyist-holds-up-spectacular-example-of-the-futility-of-widening-highways/ It's called "the Fundamental Law of Road Congestion" and there are studies showing that capacity increases only lead to people taking more trips and from greater distances. https://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/aer.101.6.2616

Suburban sprawl grows anyhow because we let it do so with our ever expanding freeways. If you contain freeway capacity, you can help contain sprawl. If you had a job downtown and Dodge Street was an LA style parking lot every morning, would you still live out at 168th? A dark future will come to Omaha if we don't start planning for growth like a city instead of a small farming community.

And, if you divert traffic outside the core, you divert potential customers for businesses as well. Travelers like to stop for food, lodging, gas, attractions, etc and are less likely to seek them out if they are unfamiliar with an area. Consider the Kearney Archway and why it located where it did.

Nebraska is a build as you go state vs planning ahead. It's going to hurt us in the long run. Mass transit should come about but at this point, we aren't a large enough city yet to even make it profitable, and it's more expensive and brings less revenue and bang for your buck back than a freeway does. It's not opinion, it's straight up facts. Only cities large enough like Chicago or NYC or even LA can pull off trains to make them profitable because of the mass amount of commuters. Omaha may get there one day, but please don't shun the idea of roads that will help us in the long run. Omaha needs to work on building for the future, not just build it after we already needed it 10 years ago.


I feel like they plan ahead pretty well roadway wise. Six lanes to Grand Island? It's the other modes that could use some work.

How large a city is has nothing to do with how profitable transit will be. Profitability isn't exactly a good measurement anyway since fares typically don't even bring in half of all income. Ridership is a better indicator of success and it's the density and walkability of a city that makes it work. In Iowa, Ames's CyRide bus system has higher ridership than Des Moines's DART bus system. Not only per capita, but in raw numbers. By a lot. In 2014 CyRide had an average daily ridership of 18,000. In 2013 Dart had 12,000. This despite Ames only having about 15% of the population. That's because Ames is dense with college students and driving to your classroom isn't much of an option. Many students prefer not to bring a car with them. They don't need to.

A better way to plan ahead would be to construct efficient, usable transit systems now and let the surrounding area densify around it. Transit Oriented Development, if you will.
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby daveoma » Tue Dec 22, 2015 8:22 pm

THANK YOU! :clap:

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby Athomsfere » Wed Dec 23, 2015 7:57 am

I am going to keep saying Omaha has the potential to do light rail well, right now.

Looked at Ames, Ia, census tracts:
2 tracts with 10-25k pop, 1 with ~27k. Total area of the tracts is ~30 blocks.
Des Moines, 0 tracts over 15k from what I can see, and it appears 3 over 10k.

Omaha in more or less the core area has 14 Tracts with over 10k. 3 of those are over 15k, 1 of those 3 is just under 20k.

I'll repost this from another thread post the other day:
Image

If we built a light rail where the blue is here:
Image

That's (only counting the heavily populated tracts) 121,264 in 2012 within walking distance of the light rail. It also gets us walking or shuttle distance to Creighton, UNO, CenturyLink Arena, Old Market, CBD, UNMC, Dundee, CWS, Hotels...

That seems incredibly lucrative for under 4 miles of track.
And we are seeing plenty of infill without the convenience of a light rail, in Omaha which is attracting a decent amount of younger people looking to ditch cars and live urbanly.

And this is all off the cuff, but surely there is a good market in Omaha to do this.

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby cdub » Wed Dec 23, 2015 8:51 am

Just to reiterate from several times over the last decade.
Bypass=bad

Too much initial cost, too much maintenance, too much sprawl as a result.
And, oh yeah, it doesn't help that which folks seem to think it will.

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby GetUrban » Wed Dec 23, 2015 1:29 pm

Athomsfere wrote:I am going to keep saying Omaha has the potential to do light rail well, right now.

Looked at Ames, Ia, census tracts:
2 tracts with 10-25k pop, 1 with ~27k. Total area of the tracts is ~30 blocks.
Des Moines, 0 tracts over 15k from what I can see, and it appears 3 over 10k.

Omaha in more or less the core area has 14 Tracts with over 10k. 3 of those are over 15k, 1 of those 3 is just under 20k.

I'll repost this from another thread post the other day:
Image

If we built a light rail where the blue is here:
Image

That's (only counting the heavily populated tracts) 121,264 in 2012 within walking distance of the light rail. It also gets us walking or shuttle distance to Creighton, UNO, CenturyLink Arena, Old Market, CBD, UNMC, Dundee, CWS, Hotels...

That seems incredibly lucrative for under 4 miles of track.
And we are seeing plenty of infill without the convenience of a light rail, in Omaha which is attracting a decent amount of younger people looking to ditch cars and live urbanly.

And this is all off the cuff, but surely there is a good market in Omaha to do this.


Extend the blue to the airport and it will get used extensively.
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby Athomsfere » Wed Dec 23, 2015 9:07 pm

GetUrban wrote:
Extend the blue to the airport and it will get used extensively.


Especially around CWS.

The rest of the year business travelers for DT companies and people like me who would rather pay a couple bucks a few times a year than pay $25 to park on the airport lots.

But in my mind, getting rail to ~25% of the population first would be the best start and then a shuttle from the last terminal to the airport seems the best start. All in my mind though, I could be persuaded.

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby GetUrban » Wed Dec 23, 2015 9:59 pm

Athomsfere wrote:
GetUrban wrote:
Extend the blue to the airport and it will get used extensively.


Especially around CWS.

The rest of the year business travelers for DT companies and people like me who would rather pay a couple bucks a few times a year than pay $25 to park on the airport lots.

But in my mind, getting rail to ~25% of the population first would be the best start and then a shuttle from the last terminal to the airport seems the best start. All in my mind though, I could be persuaded.


Sure, it would get used during the CWS, but it would be real convenient for out-of-town visitors to downtown businesses, conventions, Midtown, and Nebraska Medicine to not have to rent a car during their stay. Having outsiders help pay for stuff we need is always good too. But I agree, at the same time, it also needs to serve residents, especially in denser neighborhoods suited to collecting riders within walking distance. Expand it further west in the future to park-n-ride collection points. We need this more than another beltway.
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby MTO » Thu Dec 24, 2015 6:21 am

Would love to see its western terminus at crossroads with its massive garage but how the tracks get there :what:
And with the former steal proper being redeveloped perhaps a garage for riders could be considered.
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby Athomsfere » Thu Dec 24, 2015 6:30 am

MTO wrote:Would love to see its western terminus at crossroads with its massive garage but how the tracks get there :what:


I think as Omaha fills in that makes sense too, especially with the Crossroads redevelopment. Heck, get it to NFM. Everyone has a mall, NFM is a local attraction :p

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby michaelsjewel » Thu Dec 31, 2015 7:09 pm

TitosBuritoBarn wrote:
michaelsjewel wrote:There may not be funding now, but it the beltway is considered necessary to alleviate congestion, especially when it comes to truck traffic. Omaha is kind of a future mess in the making. The fact that you have I-80 the really only freeway across the city: I say this, because this will hinder DT omaha growth because 480 can only dump so many cars onto 80... there's no 580 that was supposed to be where dodge/cass run now (which would've prevented this future problem) - so 80 will continuously have to handle more traffic. Solution: a beltway to take thru traffic off of the I-80. Think of the fact that in this report they mention that truck traffic will increase 80% alone. That's going to be a huge demand on our roads. We simply cannot keep adding lanes upon lanes on 80 as there's no room. A lot of this traffic could be diverted out of the core that want to drive through Omaha anyways as 80 is one of the longest freeways in the nation connecting San Fran with NYC. There needs to be a mix yes, but you cannot simply say that the beltway doesn't serve a huge purpose of helping the city out in the long run. If we forget it, you may as well spell a dark future for Omaha. You don't have to worry about suburban sprawl hurting us too much, it grows anyhow and Omaha isn't landlocked yet (we just annex everything which keeps tax revenue coming in).


Adding freeway capacity usually does little for congestion. This article discusses a $2.3 billion freeway expansion in the Houston area that alleviated congestion temporarily before it reached capacity again. Travel times increased by 13 minutes in the morning and 19 minutes in the evening over the course of two years. Two. http://usa.streetsblog.org/2015/12/16/lobbyist-holds-up-spectacular-example-of-the-futility-of-widening-highways/ It's called "the Fundamental Law of Road Congestion" and there are studies showing that capacity increases only lead to people taking more trips and from greater distances. https://www.aeaweb.org/articles.php?doi=10.1257/aer.101.6.2616

Suburban sprawl grows anyhow because we let it do so with our ever expanding freeways. If you contain freeway capacity, you can help contain sprawl. If you had a job downtown and Dodge Street was an LA style parking lot every morning, would you still live out at 168th? A dark future will come to Omaha if we don't start planning for growth like a city instead of a small farming community.

And, if you divert traffic outside the core, you divert potential customers for businesses as well. Travelers like to stop for food, lodging, gas, attractions, etc and are less likely to seek them out if they are unfamiliar with an area. Consider the Kearney Archway and why it located where it did.

Nebraska is a build as you go state vs planning ahead. It's going to hurt us in the long run. Mass transit should come about but at this point, we aren't a large enough city yet to even make it profitable, and it's more expensive and brings less revenue and bang for your buck back than a freeway does. It's not opinion, it's straight up facts. Only cities large enough like Chicago or NYC or even LA can pull off trains to make them profitable because of the mass amount of commuters. Omaha may get there one day, but please don't shun the idea of roads that will help us in the long run. Omaha needs to work on building for the future, not just build it after we already needed it 10 years ago.


I feel like they plan ahead pretty well roadway wise. Six lanes to Grand Island? It's the other modes that could use some work.

How large a city is has nothing to do with how profitable transit will be. Profitability isn't exactly a good measurement anyway since fares typically don't even bring in half of all income. Ridership is a better indicator of success and it's the density and walkability of a city that makes it work. In Iowa, Ames's CyRide bus system has higher ridership than Des Moines's DART bus system. Not only per capita, but in raw numbers. By a lot. In 2014 CyRide had an average daily ridership of 18,000. In 2013 Dart had 12,000. This despite Ames only having about 15% of the population. That's because Ames is dense with college students and driving to your classroom isn't much of an option. Many students prefer not to bring a car with them. They don't need to.

A better way to plan ahead would be to construct efficient, usable transit systems now and let the surrounding area densify around it. Transit Oriented Development, if you will.


I'm not sure I can take you seriously when you think Nebraska does a pretty good job at planning ahead on roads, when we as a state, rank 2nd worst state in the nation for roads. (NY being the worst) That's pretty bad. Please tell me what you plan on doing to alleviate an 80% truck increase by 2050? At least they need to build the bypass in sarpy county to take some of those trucks off i-80. I-80 has only gotten worse, not better because it's the only true freeway across the city. And as much as I agree that we need to build denser, part of the problem with people building or moving to inner city is the costs involved. Not everyone can afford to pay 500k-1mil or more for condos when they'd rather have a big house, or a small one for that matter. Perhaps working on the income gap would also help suspend urban sprawl as well instead of just saying that mass transit will. It's not that we should only do mass transit and forget freeways: they should be doing both, not one or the other. And that Houston article fails to mention the fact that those suburbs grew substantially afterwards. If it wasn't that freeway expanding to help with increased traffic, that traffic would've ended up elsewhere such as stoplight roads and such. Some streets with lights can be so congested, you'll actually keep people from going to those stores out of pure disgust of over the top traffic congestion to begin with. The point of a freeway is to remove congestion period: if that means the freeways get more congested, they are taking that congestion from elsewhere (be it local roads or other freeways). I don't think Omaha has a threat of starving the core when Omaha has room to annex most of this (except Sarpy county)... all that extra city expansion would go to city coffers. This isn't like Chicago where it's surrounded by multiple communities that starve the city.

Either way, I'm not an urban planner and I doubt you are either. Fact remains that the Omaha master plan has already determined it's a need, not a want, and that it just needs funding.
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby daveoma » Thu Dec 31, 2015 7:39 pm

In terms of the high cost of condominiums, I think if the city and/or state wanted to, they could add incentives to homeowners to buy condos to encourage higher density. This could be done in lieu of spending hundreds of millions of dollars on a freeway that will cause more people to sit in traffic jams and get fat on their way to work. Plus aren't expensive condominiums/apartments expensive because they're in demand?

For the Houston example, I dread the day Omaha is planning to emulate Houston. Any kind of infrastructure improvement will drive growth. I would much rather Omaha emulate Chicago or Vancouver than Houston.

Also, which source is claiming truck traffic in Omaha will increase 80%?

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby michaelsjewel » Thu Dec 31, 2015 7:50 pm

daveoma wrote:In terms of the high cost of condominiums, I think if the city and/or state wanted to, they could add incentives to homeowners to buy condos to encourage higher density. This could be done in lieu of spending hundreds of millions of dollars on a freeway that will cause more people to sit in traffic jams and get fat on their way to work. Plus aren't expensive condominiums/apartments expensive because they're in demand?

For the Houston example, I dread the day Omaha is planning to emulate Houston. Any kind of infrastructure improvement will drive growth. I would much rather Omaha emulate Chicago or Vancouver than Houston.

Also, which source is claiming truck traffic in Omaha will increase 80%?


The plan that is linked in this article... I actually read it, almost completely. http://www.mapacog.org/long-range-trans ... n-planning

And condos are just plain expensive anywhere you look, especially in DT markets. It's why Downtown living is out of reach for many who plainly, just cannot afford it. To me, that's the real reason for urban sprawl.
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby NEDodger » Thu Dec 31, 2015 11:43 pm

daveoma wrote:In terms of the high cost of condominiums, I think if the city and/or state wanted to, they could add incentives to homeowners to buy condos to encourage higher density. This could be done in lieu of spending hundreds of millions of dollars on a freeway that will cause more people to sit in traffic jams and get fat on their way to work. Plus aren't expensive condominiums/apartments expensive because they're in demand?

For the Houston example, I dread the day Omaha is planning to emulate Houston. Any kind of infrastructure improvement will drive growth. I would much rather Omaha emulate Chicago or Vancouver than Houston.

Also, which source is claiming truck traffic in Omaha will increase 80%?


Tax incentives.....to help people buy....condos.

:shock:

I've now officially heard everything on this board.

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby Athomsfere » Fri Jan 01, 2016 9:11 am

Like that is really so far out there?

Not like TIF for condo buyers I would assume, but lower property tax rates for buying condos that meet specific metrics like density, access to X, Y Z.

Of course, builders would probably catch wind pretty quick and raise the price of the condos exactly what the tax difference was.

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby NEDodger » Fri Jan 01, 2016 3:28 pm

Athomsfere wrote:Of course, builders would probably catch wind pretty quick and raise the price of the condos exactly what the tax difference was.


That, just for starters.

I'd also add:

- The "higher price" of condos is due to demand in comparison to the same product (housing) in the same market. Why should we be subsidizing the cost of something that has a higher price due to demand? The market is apparently there.

- It's not like throwing in a 5,000 dollar incentive is going to move the market. The gap between affordability and the number of purchases required for this to actually drive density is large. What would it take to drive an additional segment of the population into condos? A 20% reduction in price? Let's say condo prices are $300,000. Everyone else in Omaha should be kicking in $60,000 for each of those purchases?

- Recent history has shown that it's a bad idea to push people into purchasing expensive things they cannot afford.

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby TitosBuritoBarn » Fri Jan 01, 2016 7:27 pm

michaelsjewel wrote:
I'm not sure I can take you seriously when you think Nebraska does a pretty good job at planning ahead on roads, when we as a state, rank 2nd worst state in the nation for roads. (NY being the worst) That's pretty bad.


When's the last time anywhere in Nebraska ended up on a "most congested" list?

Please tell me what you plan on doing to alleviate an 80% truck increase by 2050? At least they need to build the bypass in sarpy county to take some of those trucks off i-80. I-80 has only gotten worse, not better because it's the only true freeway across the city.


I'm not sure I believe there will be an 80% increase on truck traffic in that amount of time. No one can really predict the future. But even if there is, I-80 has enough capacity and widening it won't make the problem go away. We're going to get more congested with more people regardless. Find me a large city without a congestion problem. I'd honestly like to see it.

And as much as I agree that we need to build denser, part of the problem with people building or moving to inner city is the costs involved. Not everyone can afford to pay 500k-1mil or more for condos when they'd rather have a big house, or a small one for that matter.


Who said they all have to live in condos? Japan has pretty well mastered the art of dense single family homes. Not to say we should be like Japan, but you can have your dense, walkable neighborhoods with single family homes and yards.

It's not that we should only do mass transit and forget freeways: they should be doing both, not one or the other.


Agreed. But the freeways are fine. We've focused on the freeways. We've always focused on the freeways. It's time to even things out by investing in transit.

And that Houston article fails to mention the fact that those suburbs grew substantially afterwards.


I know. Like I pointed out, freeway expansion encourages sprawl.

I don't think Omaha has a threat of starving the core when Omaha has room to annex most of this (except Sarpy county)... all that extra city expansion would go to city coffers.


Okay. The wealthy suburbs out west support the city coffers (which they don't like to do because it takes money away from their neighborhoods) and the rest of the city is fine to just rot?

Either way, I'm not an urban planner and I doubt you are either.


I am. Going on 8 years. Currently in the Chicago area.
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby Coyote » Fri Jan 01, 2016 8:13 pm

TitosBuritoBarn wrote:I am. Going on 8 years. Currently in the Chicago area.


And it seems like just yesterday you were in Ames...
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby michaelsjewel » Sat Jan 02, 2016 6:18 am

Funny how Chicago is one of the worst area's in the country for traffic... http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/ct-c ... story.html But that's to be expected with a large city. Traffic there, is a nightmare.
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby Omaha Cowboy » Sat Jan 02, 2016 6:52 am

Coyote wrote:
TitosBuritoBarn wrote:I am. Going on 8 years. Currently in the Chicago area.


And it seems like just yesterday you were in Ames...


I was thinking the same thing.. Then I scrolled down and read your comment-

Agreed!..

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby MTO » Sat Jan 02, 2016 1:45 pm

Ok so we're to the point Sarpy county is built out and western Douglas county is built out and now spreading north way beyond Bennington. Do we extend the BRT lines, build expressways or leave those that far out suffer? I'm trying to see if there's a reasonable point to expand the freeway system or are the anti-sprawl folks not reasonable..
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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby daveoma » Sat Jan 02, 2016 2:43 pm

I think if the people in the suburbs want a freeway, they should pay for it themselves. They can barrow money then finance the payments with tolls. If tax payers in the suburbs don't want their tax money to pay for mass transit in the city, then tax payers in the city shouldn't pay for a freeway in the suburbs.

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Re: $1.1 Billion in Infrastructure Investment by 2040

Postby MTO » Sat Jan 02, 2016 2:51 pm

And suburban tax payers won't pay for a rail system in the city?
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