What If?

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NEDodger
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What If?

Postby NEDodger » Sat Apr 09, 2016 9:13 pm

Hey all,

I don't normally post all that much, but the recent developments with HDR (pun intended) had me thinking. Now, I'm a huge comic book guy (mostly Silver Age and Bronze Age). If you're into them as well, you may be aware of a title Marvel published a few times called "What If?". Just like it implies it basically took a major plot point in comics history, had events turn out a different way, and told the story of what subsequently happened.

I thought it'd be interesting to take some key (and more recent, as I believe it'd be easier to back up the assumptions) events in Omaha history and ask what you honestly believe would have happened had things taken a different turn? I present to you the following scenarios:

"What If.....the Marriott Hotel Tower had been built instead of the Hilton?"

"What If...Ak-Sar-Ben had been converted into a casino resort?"

"What If...the SAC Air and Space Museum had postponed construction, and ended up in North Downtown/the riverfront?"

"What If...Rosenblatt Stadium were renovated, instead of a new downtown stadium having been built?"

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Brad
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Re: What If?

Postby Brad » Mon Apr 11, 2016 12:35 pm

"What If.....the Marriott Hotel Tower had been built instead of the Hilton?"

The Capitol District would probably still be a parking lot.

"What If...Ak-Sar-Ben had been converted into a casino resort?"

It would still be a dump and the area would have never taken off

"What If...the SAC Air and Space Museum had postponed construction, and ended up in North Downtown/the riverfront?"

We would have missed a lot of cool events over the past 20 years

"What If...Rosenblatt Stadium were renovated, instead of a new downtown stadium having been built?"

The CWS would be gone. No amount of renovation at Rosenblatt could bring even a quarter of what TD Ameritrade offers behind the scenes.
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Re: What If?

Postby iamjacobm » Mon Apr 11, 2016 3:24 pm

I think some different interesting what ifs are

What if we chose the America First proposal instead of Wallstreet. Do we have TDA HQ DT?

What if we pulled the trigger on streetcar in the early 2000s? Is Omaha one of the "hot" cities with urban development all over the place or does it become the novelty that others suggest and hamper the city fiscally?

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Re: What If?

Postby NEDodger » Mon Apr 11, 2016 5:45 pm

Brad wrote:
"What If...the SAC Air and Space Museum had postponed construction, and ended up in North Downtown/the riverfront?"

We would have missed a lot of cool events over the past 20 years



How so?

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Re: What If?

Postby OmahaOmaha » Tue Apr 12, 2016 8:20 am

What if... Port Nebraska actually actually got built several years ago?

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Re: What If?

Postby Brad » Tue Apr 12, 2016 10:27 am

NEDodger wrote:
Brad wrote:
"What If...the SAC Air and Space Museum had postponed construction, and ended up in North Downtown/the riverfront?"

We would have missed a lot of cool events over the past 20 years



How so?


Well, you did't give a time frame, but when I read "Postponed Sac Construction, I just assumed 20 years... However now that I googled it, I realize it wasn't 20 years. The new museum opened in 1998, way later than I remember

The CenturyLink Center did't open until Fall 2003, Slow Down/Film Streams in 2007. I just don't see that they would have built anything in Northdown or on the Riverfront until after the 2003 opening of the Century Link Center.
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Re: What If?

Postby NEDodger » Tue Apr 12, 2016 11:54 am

My bad - I meant in conjunction with the Qwest/riverfront. Say, a SAC Museum where Rick's Boatyard was built or just north of the convention center.

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Re: What If?

Postby Taco » Tue Apr 12, 2016 12:52 pm

I'm a little young to remember/know about most of the decisions mentioned so far so I'll go with a recent decision that was small but could have had a large cascade:

What would have happened if The Lot had been developed at the same time as The Slowdown/Filmstreams plot as originally planned. Would this have drawn further development investment in North Downtown and prevented the later growth of the Little Italy area? Or what if the development was suburban in nature like the hotels - would this have stunted further growth by establishing the area as "uncool"?

Or maybe the effects wouldn't have been large - a two block developed area still isn't that noteworthy.

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Re: What If?

Postby Garrett » Tue Apr 12, 2016 7:10 pm

I think the SAC would have been out of place in North Downtown. A better place would be near Durham or Joslyn. Omaha should, at some point, attempt to develop a sort of museum district. An area of high culture, arts, and history would be fantastic. Everything is so spread out as its been built.
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Re: What If?

Postby NEDodger » Wed Apr 13, 2016 3:30 am

Taco wrote:I'm a little young to remember/know about most of the decisions mentioned so far so I'll go with a recent decision that was small but could have had a large cascade:

What would have happened if The Lot had been developed at the same time as The Slowdown/Filmstreams plot as originally planned. Would this have drawn further development investment in North Downtown and prevented the later growth of the Little Italy area? Or what if the development was suburban in nature like the hotels - would this have stunted further growth by establishing the area as "uncool"?

Or maybe the effects wouldn't have been large - a two block developed area still isn't that noteworthy.


I believe that Little Italy continues as it has been. The area is now seen as "hot" and land to the west along Cuming gets piecemealed purchased for further development. Because development has started up a little quicker than initially expected, the land where the stadium currently sits is the one given up for development by MECA (instead of Lot B) and the stadium is placed on the lot directly north of CenturyLink. The sentiment is that this is optimal for fans as it places parking options for fans equidistant around the area - Lot B (which remains a surface lot), the lot to the west (current stadium, which here becomes parking garages), and the remaining surface lots between Meca Drive and Abbott.

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Re: What If?

Postby NEDodger » Wed Apr 13, 2016 3:37 am

OmahaOmaha wrote:What if... Port Nebraska actually actually got built several years ago?


Port Nebraska opens in 2008/2009, amidst the financial crisis. The park attempts to lure visitors with admissions of 34.95, but the recession leaves people with two options:

1.) Stay home / spend less to go to Fun Plex
2.) Spend a little more and have a far superior experience at Worlds of Fun

The economy begins to slowly recover. Word of mouth about Port Nebraska isn't that great - "expensive version of Fun-Plex", "you may as well just go to Worlds of Fun", "We need a Six Flags!", etc.. With discretionary income returning, the people who had been staying home or going to Fun Plex....choose to also spend a little more and just go to Worlds of Fun. The banks become nervous as Minard's rosy projections aren't coming close to fruition. He's given a little more leeway as the economy is starting to improve. Attendance is half of projections and by 2015 the park still isn't turning a profit. Port Nebraska goes into bankruptcy and the rides are sold off to other parks around the nation.

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Re: What If?

Postby Busguy2010 » Wed Apr 13, 2016 2:39 pm

iamjacobm wrote:What if we pulled the trigger on streetcar in the early 2000s? Is Omaha one of the "hot" cities with urban development all over the place or does it become the novelty that others suggest and hamper the city fiscally?


I really think that streetcar line would have flopped. It would have offered next to nothing as a commuter line, and lost much of its use when the CWS moved. A connector between the CLink and the Zoo is almost entirely useless to people living here. I think there would be a line down 10th some day, but as a connector line to this new proposal.

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Re: What If?

Postby NEDodger » Fri Apr 15, 2016 11:59 pm

iamjacobm wrote:I think some different interesting what ifs are

What if we chose the America First proposal instead of Wallstreet. Do we have TDA HQ DT?


The City of Omaha decides that the former Union Pacific site will go towards development of the America First group. The building needs a core tenant to make its "mostly office space" design work. TD Ameritrade is courted but decides that it prefers to have an Old Mill campus. News breaks that a baseball stadium will be built in north downtown. In response, construction starts as America First has updated their plans. An 18-story building is going to be constructed with half of the floors dedicated to a hotel, a few floors leased out to Union Pacific, and the remainder of the building leased to its core client...Pacific Life.

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Re: What If?

Postby Garrett » Sat Apr 16, 2016 6:44 pm

What if InterNorth/Enron never left Omaha? One scenario where they collapse as they did, another where they don't and still exist.
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Re: What If?

Postby Coyote » Sat Apr 16, 2016 7:41 pm

Here is one that a Poly Sci teacher at UNO in the 70's regretted...
What if Omaha created a Missouri River Barge Terminal in the 60's and developed a river agriculrural transportation system?
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Re: What If?

Postby PotatoeEatsFish » Sun Apr 17, 2016 1:51 am

I know what Wallstreet Tower was but what did the America Group's rendering look like?
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Re: What If?

Postby Linkin5 » Sun Apr 17, 2016 3:41 pm

PotatoeEatsFish wrote:I know what Wallstreet Tower was but what did the America Group's rendering look like?


It was a pretty bland 20 or so story building with predominantly glass if I remember correctly.

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Re: What If?

Postby Athomsfere » Tue Apr 19, 2016 8:47 pm

Linkin5 wrote:
PotatoeEatsFish wrote:I know what Wallstreet Tower was but what did the America Group's rendering look like?


It was a pretty bland 20 or so story building with predominantly glass if I remember correctly.


I'd say you don't :shock:

Actually, the bland / glass statement might be accurate, however subjective. I liked it!

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But the height thing: Something like 370ft and 32 stories was the plan.

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Re: What If?

Postby Linkin5 » Tue Apr 19, 2016 10:12 pm

Athomsfere wrote:
Linkin5 wrote:
PotatoeEatsFish wrote:I know what Wallstreet Tower was but what did the America Group's rendering look like?


It was a pretty bland 20 or so story building with predominantly glass if I remember correctly.


I'd say you don't :shock:

Actually, the bland / glass statement might be accurate, however subjective. I liked it!

Image

But the height thing: Something like 370ft and 32 stories was the plan.


That's Wallstreet tower from Townsend, they were asking what America First's proposal looked like.

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Re: What If?

Postby Athomsfere » Wed Apr 20, 2016 10:02 pm

Linkin5 wrote:That's Wallstreet tower from Townsend, they were asking what America First's proposal looked like.


|expletive|, I have no idea then! And googling ain't helping!

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Re: What If?

Postby PotatoeEatsFish » Fri Apr 22, 2016 12:19 pm

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Is that it?

EDIT:
It's a tower from Chicago.
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