NRD dam-building plan

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NRD dam-building plan

Postby eomaha » Sun Jul 18, 2004 10:24 am

The metro area recreation opportunities would skyrocket with the building of a proposed 1,900 acre lake.  As a boater limited to Manawa/Carter Lake/driving to Branched Oak... this has me real excited.

From the World Herald...

Metro-area dam plan refloated

After two decades on the shelf, a controversial dam-building plan for the Omaha metropolitan area has been resurrected to reduce the potential for destructive flooding.

The $186 million project, under review by the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District, would aim for 10 dams in Douglas, Washington and Sarpy Counties.

Farmland, pasture and some homes would be inundated, with portions of the towns of Washington and Kennard affected.

The payoff would be control of 50 percent or more of the watershed, significantly reducing damage from a 100-year magnitude flood in the metropolitan area. The new lakes created also could spur economic development and would expand recreational opportunities.

"There's no question in terms of flood control that this is the best technical answer," said Steve Oltmans, general manager of the NRD and one of the chief architects of the revived plan. "But is it the best politically? That's debatable."

Mindful of the intense opposition that quashed these dams in the 1980s, the NRD is proposing to give landowners a stake in the success of the lakes by allowing them to keep much of the surrounding land.

The crown jewel would be a 1,900-acre lake northwest of Bennington - more than four times larger than Cunningham Lake and similar in size to Branched Oak Lake near Lincoln. The lake would stretch four miles from Washington to Kennard.

The lake could be ringed by some public land, but most of the land would be private. The hills above the lake have been mentioned as a possible site for a business-technology campus that would pair with housing.

Depending on how the lake is designed, as many as 32 properties would have to be bought or moved, with 26 of those being in the village of Washington. Seventeen more in Washington and 26 in Kennard would be affected to a lesser extent.

Also on the drawing board are two lakes that could tie into major parks planned for west and northwest Omaha. One would be at 192nd Street and West Dodge Road, where the City of Omaha has acquired 80 acres of parkland. The other is proposed near 168th and Fort Streets.

The park at 192nd and Dodge would be "kind of a west Omaha gathering place - like Memorial Park," said Larry Foster, head of the city's parks department. "Long, sweeping banks and opportunities for concerts and fireworks - a gathering area that west Omahans don't really have."

Construction of a majority of the lakes probably would be financed through public-private partnerships.

The NRD proposes using public dollars to pay for the dams and, probably, some of the land that would be flooded. In some cases, the NRD might buy 50 percent or more of the acres that would be under water. Developers would share some of the remaining cost of the flooded land and, along with private property owners, would retain much of the land on the hills around the lakes.

Such an approach should ease some of the opposition, said Dick Conneally, the NRD board member who represents Washington County, where most of the land would be flooded.

"If we approach it right, I don't see it getting stopped like it was before," Conneally said. "This should be a win-win situation for people."

Given the scope of the plans, it is unlikely that all the dams will be built, Oltmans said. The large Washington County lake is 10 to 15 years away from becoming a reality, if indeed it is created.

For the short term, Oltmans said, three dams seem most likely to be built - the two that would pair with city parks and a small lake in northwest Sarpy County.

Public money for these smaller dams would come from a 1-cent increase in the property tax. The increase would be earmarked for dam construction and would generate about $3.6 million a year for the NRD. (For the owner of a home valued at $100,000 for tax purposes, the 1-cent increase would translate into $10 a year.)

Multiple partners, including other sources of government funding, would need to be found for the large Washington County lake, Oltmans said.

"This is a big idea for us - it's $94 million," he said. "In Nebraska, that's a big public project. A lot of things have got to happen. But I do believe it could happen."

The NRD board has given preliminary approval to a one-year increase in the property tax, but it has not voted on the overall dam plan. That vote is expected to occur no earlier than October. In the meantime, the board has asked for additional information on funding sources and financial standards for the public-private partnerships.

If the full plan is adopted, the board still will have to vote on each dam as it moves toward reality.

Because some of the smaller lakes would rely heavily on developers, Oltmans said, those lakes essentially would become private, with no public access for boating - similar to Newport Landing Lake west of Bennington.

Many of the lakes, however, would have hiking-biking trails and would be open to fishing. As the plans stand now, none of the lakes would have public swimming beaches.

Plans for the dams date to the mid-1960s when devastating floods struck Omaha two years in a row. Seven people died, and 18,000 acres were flooded.

To protect Omaha from a repeat of that flooding, plans were drawn up for 21 dams in the Papillion Creek watershed. Seven were built, but opponents blocked the rest.

Before construction came to a halt, the Omaha area gained what would become some of its most popular recreation areas: Zorinsky, Cunningham, Wehrspann, Standing Bear and Walnut Creek Lakes. Also built were two private lakes, Candlewood and Newport Landing.

Of the 14 dams left on the drawing board, a study by HDR Engineering Inc. has found that two no longer are feasible. Two others essentially have been dropped.

Additional dams are needed, Oltmans said, because development over the past 20 or so years has eaten away at the buffer gained from previous dams and flood improvements.

"We still have a very high flood threat," he said, "and it continually gets worse."

Since the mid-1960s, about 120 square miles of concrete and rooftops have been added, greatly increasing the amount of water that is no longer being absorbed by open land but instead is washing into creeks. Heavy rain can lead to dangerous flooding within hours.

The natural resources district needs to move forward with these plans now, several board members said, because development is gobbling up land and pushing up prices. As it stands now, about 75 percent of the $186 million is expected to go toward land acquisition. That amount, though, Oltmans said, assumes that the public pays for all the land under the lakes, which won't be necessary if developers participate.

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Postby Sodak » Wed Jul 21, 2004 4:54 pm

I agree. About the only thing I would bring with me from my native South Dakota to Omaha would be the numerous lakes within an hour of my hometown. A 1900 acre lake would provide huge recreational opportunities to Omaha.

The article states that most of the land around the lake would not be public, though. I hope that if the dam is constructed, that the state is able to snag some land for a state park or recreational area.

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NRD dam expansion takes big step forward

Postby eomaha » Fri Aug 13, 2004 2:11 am

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Papio NRD approves tax hike for dams

Over the objections of dam opponents and tax activists, the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District on Thursday approved a $32 million budget that includes a 1-cent increase in its property tax rate to fund dam construction.

The board voted 8-1 in favor of the budget, with board member Joe Neary the sole opponent.

The board also rejected two measures related to the dams.

On a 7-2 vote, the board voted against establishing dam guidelines that aim to minimize the land taken off the tax rolls and maximize the money that property owners receive for land rights. And on a 6-4 vote, the board voted against extending a dam study.

"These are side issues - after you decide you want a project," Neary said. "I don't think this board has decided we're going to do this project."

About 80 people attended the meeting.

The tax increase is for one year, and the money will be earmarked for dam construction. It is anticipated that it would be renewed to fund at least a couple of new dams in Douglas and Sarpy Counties.

Up to 10 dams are proposed for a total cost of $186 million.

The most controversial dams are in Washington County. And it was two large dams proposed for that county that drew opponents Thursday night. Those at the meeting didn't buy the contention that the dams are needed to reduce flooding in the metropolitan area.

"This is not for flood control," said Kaye Haslam of Kennard. "We're not ignorant. This is for recreation for Omaha."

The proposed tax increase also drew opposition.

Doug Kagan, chairman of Nebraska Taxpayers for Freedom, a taxpayer watchdog group, said the NRD can find other items to trim from its budget to avoid a tax increase.

The 1-cent increase translates into a $10 increase in taxes on a home valued at $100,000. This is the NRD's largest increase in 15 years.


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Postby Brad » Sat Aug 14, 2004 12:18 am

Lets get these lakes built and built NOW

I sure hope we can ski on the big lake(hopefully no toxic algy)!

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New dam site lake/park proposed

Postby eomaha » Sat Nov 13, 2004 10:26 am

This is dam site #13 in the comprehensive Papio NRD project for those keeping score.

Project link

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Omaha World Herald wrote:Lake, park proposed for west edge of Omaha

Construction could begin as early as next year on a modest-sized lake that is to anchor what will be suburban west Omaha's signature park.

The lake would be built through a public-private partnership, with upscale housing, retirement homes and offices along the banks. The lake would be along 192nd Street between West Dodge Road and Blondo Street.

The approximately $7 million, 58-acre lake would be funded through a partnership of the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District, the City of Omaha and Dial Cos.

Taxpayers would foot most of the cost of the lake, which would be the first of as many as 10 new lakes that have been proposed for flood control in the metropolitan area.

An NRD board committee will review the lake plan Tuesday. The full board is scheduled to vote Thursday.

Contingent on NRD approval, the office development and housing proposed by Dial are scheduled to go before the planning boards of Elkhorn and Omaha in December and January.

If all goes according to schedule, the dam will be built next year. The lake, which would be about 1 1/2 times the size of Candlewood Lake, would fill during the following one to three years.

The public would have full access to the lake for fishing and boating. Like other public lakes, this would be a no-wake lake. Eventually, the Cities of Elkhorn and Omaha would build trails around the lake that would link to other trails in the metro area.

Development of the park itself is years away. The City of Omaha owns the land, but has not yet included its development in its long-range budget.

The future park, at 192nd and Dodge on the southeast side of the new lake, has been dubbed the Memorial Park of west Omaha. Like Omaha's Memorial Park at Dodge Street and Happy Hollow Boulevard, the new park will have a sloping look and will include a large civic monument, an outdoor amphitheater and sledding hills. The park is planned as a grand entrance into west Omaha.

"Think of broad, open spaces and tree-lined walks," said Dave Ciaccio, the landscape architect who drew up the design for the park.

The lake also would connect with the Elkhorn campus of Metropolitan Community College, Elkhorn High School and Elkhorn Ridge Golf Course.

On the northwest side of the lake, the Dial Cos. would develop the land for upscale single-family and senior housing, said Chris Held of Dial. Included are 23 lakeside lots for homes that would sell from $750,000. Homes farther from the lake would sell for lesser amounts.

Held said the campus for senior citizens would include everything from individual homes to townhouses to an assisted-living complex.

Along 192nd Street, Dial would build an office complex. Lyman-Richey Sand and Gravel Corp. has a plant on that side of the lake site, which it would upgrade.

Steve Oltmans, general manager for the NRD, said that although the cost of the land is high - $53,871 an acre - he believes the price is fair.

"This is an example of land prices going up," Oltmans said. "The longer we wait, the more expensive it gets."

The land is being purchased from the Zalkin Real Estate Trust. The Zalkin family farmed there for years, said Bob Belgrade, one of the trustees. This fall, corn and soybeans were harvested.

On the north side of the development, Blondo would curve south so that a portion of the Old Lincoln Highway can be preserved.

Held said Dial is looking forward to developing the project.

"There aren't too many places in town where you have these amenities - a lake and park together," he said.

Under the agreement that the NRD will vote on next week, Dial would provide the NRD with $1 million toward the cost of the land. The NRD would pay Dial $2.3 million for the fill dirt needed for the dam and for other improvements. A portion of land the City of Omaha already has purchased for the park will be used for the lake.

Dial and the NRD are paying the same price for the land, Oltmans said, with the NRD purchasing 65 acres for the dam and lake from the Zalkin Trust. Dial is buying 87 acres for its residential and office complexes, Held said.

The NRD also plans to purchase about 22 acres from Lyman-Richey.

The lake would provide flood control for about a two-square mile area of the watershed along a small tributary of the West Papillion Creek. Like the other smaller lakes that are proposed, that is less than 1 percent of the flood protection in the plan.

The real gains in flood control would come from two massive lakes proposed for Washington County - lakes that face stiff resistance from landowners. An NRD vote on the master plan, which was to have come this year, probably won't occur before next year, Oltmans said.

Unlike some of the other dams in the plan, no homes or roads would be flooded to build the west suburban lake. West Dodge Road in this area was designed with the lake in mind.

The NRD would own, operate and maintain the dam, which means the NRD would retain liability for it.

Most of the green space at the lake would be on the southeast side where the city park and NRD property would total about 100 acres, Oltmans said. Along the developed areas, the site would not have nearly the amount of green space that people are used to seeing at most local flood-control reservoirs, he said.

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Postby Will » Sat Nov 13, 2004 2:28 pm

This is a great thing for the city of Elkhorn. It will be realy nice to go to a football game and look accross the stadium and see a lake instead of a cornfield.
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Postby projectman » Sat Nov 13, 2004 2:49 pm

I just wish somewhere in this county, a lake with a sandy beach for swimming would become reality.

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New West Omaha lake

Postby nativeomahan » Sat Nov 13, 2004 5:46 pm

This is the type of development that west Omaha needs. Something with a "Wow!" factor. I hope that the announced plans come to fruition.

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Postby Kristi » Sat Nov 13, 2004 7:48 pm

This would be awesome!!! It would be nice to have some green space left along Dodge St. I drive down it and don't even recognize it anymore. :cry:
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Postby Brad » Mon Nov 15, 2004 3:05 pm

I just wish somewhere in this county, a lake with a sandy beach for swimming would become reality.


You would have to build it along the Platte River where there is lots of sand. There is a lot of lakes along the river, however most of them are private.

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Postby Coyote » Mon Nov 15, 2004 3:31 pm

Linoma Beach is not far away in Sarpy County.
http://www.linomabeach.com/index.html

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Postby eomaha » Wed Nov 17, 2004 9:47 pm

Omaha World Herald wrote:West Omaha lake takes step closer to reality

Taxpayers are picking up by far the larger share of the tab for a public-private dam and lake at 192nd Street and West Dodge Road.

That steep public share, and the minimal flood control in return, caused some board members of the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District to balk Tuesday night at giving preliminary approval to the dam.

In the end, the lure of a signature park combined with a 58-acre public lake persuaded an NRD board committee to vote 3-2 in favor of recommending the project to the full board.

The full board's vote is set for Thursday. NRD approval is necessary if a public lake is to anchor what is being called the "Memorial Park" of west Omaha.

The NRD expects to spend about $6 million buying land and building the dam.

Dial Cos., which is partnering with the district, would contribute about $1 million to the project. The NRD, in return, would pay Dial about $2.4 million for fill dirt needed for the dam and site improvements.

The district also is buying land from Lyman-Richey Sand and Gravel Co., and the city is contributing some land. The total cost would be in excess of $7 million.

Such public-private partnerships are being discussed for more of the 10 proposed flood-control dams in the metro area.

Board member Joe Neary said the project has merits, but he couldn't get past the price tag.

"This project looks like we're subsidizing a developer more than we should," Neary said before voting no.

Bob Welstead of Dial told the board committee that his company is making compromises in addition to the $1 million it is paying the district.

Yes, the lake will add value to Dial's development, Welstead said. But it also will flood property that otherwise could have been converted to housing. Furthermore, the lake would be entirely public, so none of the lots would have private shoreline.

Welstead estimated that Dial will invest about $11 million to $13 million purchasing and developing the land into upscale housing, offices and a retirement complex.

Both the NRD and Dial are paying $53,871 an acre.

Board member Rich Jansen, who also voted no, said his previous support for the 1 cent property tax increase that is funding the project was predicated on the idea that the proposed lakes would reduce flooding. This lake, he said, isn't providing enough of a payback.

Voting for the dam were board members Tim Fowler, Rich Tesar and John Conley.

A number of people from Washington County who oppose dams there turned out to voice their concerns about the current dam.

Tesar quizzed Larry Foster of the Omaha Parks Department about the city's financial commitment. The city hasn't budgeted any money for park construction for the foreseeable future.

Foster said he estimates that the city will spend about $6 million to $10 million to develop the park.

Tesar asked if it was possible to accelerate construction of a boat ramp, so that the public could use the lake as soon as it fills. Foster said it is likely the money for something like that could be forthcoming.

If the board approves the dam Thursday and all goes according to schedule, the dam could be built next year and the lake would fill over the next couple of years.

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Postby OmahaDevelopmentMan » Wed Nov 17, 2004 10:07 pm

That lake would look great! Think of how nice of an 'gateway' to the city that would create. This wasn't even proposed by omaha by design was it?

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Postby redfield » Thu Nov 18, 2004 11:33 am

I agree this lake would be fantastic for the area. I really hope it happens.

I don't remember seeing anything about a lake on west dodge in the Omaha by Design proposal, but it would be very complimentary to the proposed gateway at 192nd and dodge.

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Postby eomaha » Fri Nov 19, 2004 9:17 pm

Omaha World Herald wrote:NRD board unanimous for lake

Construction of a 58-acre lake to anchor the "Memorial Park" of west Omaha received the green light Thursday - despite an overflow crowd of people opposed to the dam-building initiative.

The Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District board voted 8-0 to approve a partnership with Omaha-based Dial Cos. to build the dam.

About 120 people attended the meeting, voicing concerns about the cost of the land - $53,871 per acre - the partnership with the private developer and the possibility that the City of Omaha wouldn't take care of the planned park.

But the undercurrent of concern was what would happen down the road, when it was time for the district to turn its sights on Washington County, where two massive flood control lakes are proposed.

Those lakes would flood dozens of properties.

If the NRD is willing to spend more than $50,000 an acre in Douglas County, what's to stop it in Washington County, where land might sell for $5,000 an acre, asked Todd Andersen.

"These (dams) aren't cost-effective," he said. "I want to stop every one of them."

The next two dams that the district hopes to build are for a 215-acre lake at 168th and Fort Streets in Douglas County and a 100-acre lake near Nebraska Highway 31 and Giles Road in Sarpy County. In total, the district hopes to build up to 10 dams.

Thursday's vote stood in contrast to Tuesday, when the issue narrowly passed in committee on a 3-2 vote. Changing their minds were Joe Neary and Rich Jansen.

Board members remained split, though, over whether they saw the lake as genuine flood control.

"This project is basically a recreation project," Neary said. "If the city had not bought its property and was not going to do a park, I don't think the project could stand up to all of the money."

NRD board member John Conley took exception to Neary's comment.

"This is a flood control project," he said. "An expensive one, but it needs to be done."

The dam will control runoff from about 1 percent of the entire watershed. On the other hand, it would account for about 14 percent of the flood control that has been proposed in its section of the watershed.

The NRD's cost for the lake and dam is expected to be about $6.2 million, with $2.3 million of that being paid to Dial to build the dam. The NRD will own and retain liability for the dam.

Dial expects to spend about $11 million to $13 million developing its property into upscale houses, senior living and offices. Included in that is a $1 million payment to the NRD.

"There is no markup in this," Bob Welstead of Dial told the crowd Thursday. "No kind of funny business. We're side by side with the NRD, each paying the same price for the land."

Dial still needs approval from the cities of Elkhorn and Omaha. If all goes according to schedule, the dam is to be built next year, and the lake should fill in one to three years.

Larry Foster of the Omaha Parks Department said it will be about seven to 10 years before the park is built. However, the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission, he said, will build a boat access as soon as the lake is ready.

The lake will be along 192nd Street between West Dodge Road and Blondo Street.

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Postby Brad » Sat Nov 20, 2004 3:03 am

I think that the lakes in Douglas county are going to be much easier to get passed than the ones in Washington county.

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Postby sokkerdewd » Mon Nov 22, 2004 9:41 pm

jhuston wrote:
Omaha World Herald wrote:NRD board unanimous for lake

The next two dams that the district hopes to build are for a 215-acre lake at 168th and Fort Streets in Douglas County and a 100-acre lake near Nebraska Highway 31 and Giles Road in Sarpy County. In total, the district hopes to build up to 10 dams.



215 acres. A third of a square mile...that's actually pretty big by Omaha standards. Does anyone know the acreage of Lake Zorinsky, Cunningham, or Wehrspan? I'm just curious as to how this would compare.
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Postby redhatgeek » Tue Nov 23, 2004 11:57 am

cool
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Postby Coyote » Tue Nov 23, 2004 1:27 pm

Werhspann = 246 acres
Cunningham = 390 acres
Standing Bear = 135 acres
Zorinsky = 255 acres
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NRD sued over West Dodge dam

Postby Coyote » Fri Mar 18, 2005 1:03 am

OWH wrote:Residents sue to stop dam project

BLAIR, Neb. - A group of Washington County landowners has sued to stop the development of a dam near 192nd Street and West Dodge Road.

The dam would create a 58-acre lake that is part of proposed signature park for west Omaha.

The recreational area is a joint project of the Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District and Dial Realty Development Corp. of Omaha.

The lawsuit says the NRD violated its procedures and acted illegally by entering into a partnership with a private firm.

The suburban lake is the first of up to 10 flood control reservoirs the NRD hopes to build this decade. Two larger lakes proposed for Washington County would flood roads, homes and farmland.

The lawsuit was brought by William and Mary Japp, Todd and Jennifer Andersen, Kenneth and Dianna Olson, and Jack and Susan Lorsch, all of Washington County, and Larry and Carine Stava of rural Bennington. William Japp is president of the Papio Valley Preservation Association, a nonprofit organization formed to fight the dams.

LeRoy Sievers of Lincoln, who represents the landowners, said fighting the NRD now will help landowners battle other dams later.

"If it's not approved now, it wouldn't be approved later," he said.

The NRD board approved the partnership in November to develop Dam Site 13 in west Omaha. The area would provide flood control for about a two-square-mile area along a West Papillion Creek tributary.

City Parks Director Larry Foster has said the park would be a gathering place, with opportunities for concerts and fireworks similar to Memorial Park. He declined to comment on the suit.

The project is estimated to cost about $6.2 million. The NRD would pay Dial $2.3 million to build the dam. Dial, in turn, would contribute $1 million to the NRD. The district approved a 1-cent property tax increase last year to fund the project.

Sievers said the NRD has no right to use tax money for the project.

The lawsuit alleges that Nebraska statutes don't explicitly allow such partnerships with private companies.

NRD general manager Steven Oltmans said the district has engaged in public-private partnerships before, including on a dam near Bennington in 2002.

"I think what we're arguing about here is policy," Oltmans said.

The lawsuit also alleges that the district violated its rules by failing to take competitive bids. The directors' policy manual requires bids for projects of more than $20,000.

The lawsuit further alleges that using taxpayer money to fund the project violates the Nebraska Constitution.

The agreements between the NRD and Dial "do not serve the public interest and stand to benefit the involved private entity, Dial, significantly more than the public," according to the lawsuit.

Oltmans said that the district disagrees and that he was disappointed the landowners believed the lake would not benefit the public.

Dial has asked to have the case transferred from Washington County District Court to Douglas County because of the dam site's location. A hearing on the issue is scheduled for Monday.
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Postby icejammer » Fri Mar 18, 2005 8:49 am

Ridiculous.

And of course it was a group of Washington Co. and western Douglas Co. farmers that successfully sued to stop construction of these dams 30 years ago, when they were first proposed.

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Postby Brad » Fri Mar 18, 2005 9:19 am

This seems like total B.S. that these people have any right to sue when they don't live near the lake or even in the same county.

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Postby CountOfMC » Fri Mar 18, 2005 9:20 am

What development isn't getting sued right now... :roll:
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Postby Brad » Fri Mar 18, 2005 9:25 am

What sucks about all of the lawsuits is that a few frindge people are suing waisting taxpayers money when its in the best interest of everyone else.

8000 people in Elkhorn are suing 900,000 people in Omaha
10 people in Washington county are basically suing 1,000,000 people in douglas county

People need to start thinking about the grater good of the community as a whole!!!

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Postby DMRyan » Fri Mar 18, 2005 9:26 am

Douglas County has a million people?
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Postby Brad » Fri Mar 18, 2005 9:27 am

We are getting closer by the day. I don't know the exact figures, I am just making a point about the greater good of the community.

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Postby DMRyan » Fri Mar 18, 2005 10:14 am

Douglas County 2003 Population Estimate: 476,703.
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Postby GoWest » Fri Mar 18, 2005 4:43 pm

Brad wrote:
8000 people in Elkhorn are suing 900,000 people in Omaha
10 people in Washington county are basically suing 1,000,000 people in douglas county



900,000 in the city of Omaha! We must have had some serious population jump that I'm unaware of. Have we become the city of the extreme over exaggerators?

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Postby DTO Luv » Fri Mar 18, 2005 5:34 pm

You all know better. He's talking about a metro area.
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Brad
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Postby Brad » Fri Mar 18, 2005 7:02 pm

As I said earlier, I am just trying to make a point its a few selfish brats VS a large metro area.

Jon
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Postby Jon » Sat Mar 19, 2005 11:07 pm

Anyone uncomfortable with this development concept? We're using public funds to build these lakes, and really getting very little public benefit from them. On top of that, we have Dial developing the project. Correct me if I'm wrong, but wasn't one of the board members formerly associated with Dial? The combination of public funds with private real estate development combined with the real estate professionals on the board having control of those funds gives the appearance of impropriety.
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Coyote
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Postby Coyote » Sat Mar 19, 2005 11:44 pm

Jon wrote:Anyone uncomfortable with this development concept?

Not Me - Papio-Missouri NRD Board:

Richard Connealy, Decatur (Vice-Chairperson & Alt. NARD Director)
Dick Connealy is a farmer. In his northeastern Nebraska Community, Richard is a member of the Decatur Volunteer Fire and Rescue department, the Decatur Community Club, and the Farmer’s Union.

Fred Conley, Omaha
Fred Conley is the Enterprise Zone Coordinator with the Greater Omaha Workforce Development.

Joseph T. Neary, Omaha
Joe Neary operates his own commercial real estate brokerage and development firm. The firm builds, renovates and manages commercial properties for several partnerships.

John Conley, Omaha (Treasurer)
John Conley is the retired Manager of Engineering for Metropolitan Utilities District of Omaha.

Richard Tesar, Waterloo (Secretary & NARD Director)
Rich Tesar is owner of Rich Tesar Outdoors, a professional guiding service.

Jim Thompson, Omaha (Assistant Treasurer)
Currently a sales representative for All Makes Office Equipment Company. He is on the Board of Directors of Keep Omaha Beautiful, Inc.

Dorothy Lanphier, Omaha
Dorothy Lanphier has been actively involved in environmental issues and currently serves as the chair of the Sierra Club of Omaha.

Tim Fowler, Omaha
Tim Fowler is Senior Member Technology Staff with 21st Century Systems, Inc. He is also a Commander in the U.S. Naval Reserves.

Richard L. Kolowski, PHD
Dr. Rick Kolowski is the Principal of Millard West High School – Millard Public Schools.

Rich Jansen, Gretna (Chairperson)
Rich Jansen is owner of Platte Valley Implement and a farmer. He is president of the Sarpy County Fair Board, on the Board of the Gretna Rural Fire Department and hold memberships in the Sarpy County Agricultural Society and the Springfield Booster.

John Schwope, Bellevue
John Schwope works for the City of Omaha as a Traffic Maintenance Technician. He is active in the Omaha Federation of Labor and the labor movement.
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OhioStreetKid
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Postby OhioStreetKid » Sun Mar 20, 2005 12:20 pm

Anyone uncomfortable with this development concept? We're using public funds to build these lakes, and really getting very little public benefit from them.


We are getting quite a bit in public benefit. There will be some recreation areas around this lake, we will have the advantage of the taxes generated by this development, and most important of all FLOOD CONTROL. Flood control is taken for granted until you are in a situation where you don't have it.

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Brad
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Postby Brad » Sun Mar 20, 2005 12:50 pm

Anyone uncomfortable with this development concept? We're using public funds to build these lakes, and really getting very little public benefit from them.


Besides the flood control which is very important, these public/private lakes cost way less than a traditional public only lake. Also the city gets some good property taxes from the homes around the lake.

OmahaDevelopmentMan
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Postby OmahaDevelopmentMan » Sun Mar 20, 2005 5:52 pm

Isn't there suppose to be some office buildings around the lake as well as homes and the new 'memorial park west'? If the city works on Omaha By Design's flagged gateway, this entrance to the city would look very impressive. I wonder what else people could sue the city of Omaha for. I mean everyone else is doing it

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Swift
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Postby Swift » Mon Mar 21, 2005 12:08 am

I'm not supposed to talk about it for legal reasons, but I am currently involved in a class action suit against the City for being located in a |expletive|.

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Postby Omaha Cowboy » Mon Mar 21, 2005 1:04 am

:lol:..

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Coyote
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Dam site 3 opponents

Postby Coyote » Mon Mar 21, 2005 12:49 pm

OWH wrote:The flood of possibilities they don't want

WASHINGTON, Neb. - Patricia Campbell watches a horse ride by her living room window.

Less than a block away, Jennifer Welchert yells for her dog, and the black lab comes running out of the bushes, across the town's quiet main street back to his home.

In front of Knudsen Oil and Feed, a mail delivery man asks LeMara Eicke how to get to Bernie's house and promptly receives directions.

It's a typical morning in the village of Washington, a bedroom community of about 150 people that lies 22 miles northwest of downtown Omaha.

Residents go about their day, seemingly oblivious to the looming threat to the town where many of them were born.

Within a decade or so, nearly half of Washington could be under water. The Papio-Missouri River Natural Resources District has proposed two massive lakes in the area to reduce flood potential in west-central Omaha and eastern Sarpy County.

The larger, nearly 1,900-acre lake would inundate 26 properties in town. Seventeen more could be affected in case of heavy rainfall that would make the water level rise, possibly flooding yards and basements.

Washington residents are certain the large lake would ruin the village - valued for its closeness to Omaha and its easy access to nearby farm fields. Both commuters and farmers enjoy the town's country atmosphere.

They fear that they wouldn't be getting a nice lake but a muddy arm of shallow water in front of their doors. Many farmers would be cut off from their land to the east, forcing them to drive miles to get to their fields. Those conditions would not make the area attractive for people to rebuild.

"They've pretty much taken our houses and left us nothing," Campbell said. "They left us the mosquito patch."

Marlin Petermann, the NRD's assistant general manager, tries to ease those worries, saying the resulting lake would be as deep as other metro-area lakes.

"That seems to be attractive," he said.

Peterman said the district would have preferred to build the dams without affecting any homes but said the current proposal would allow the most flood control.

He said the district would meet with area residents if plans move forward. For now, he said, the district is focusing on other dam sites.

Washington started as a railroad town in 1887, a stop on a shortcut route from Arlington to the South Omaha stock yards. Its population has fluctuated greatly over the years.

Businesses have come and gone, the railroad depot has left, and the town has lost its social gathering places, most recently its post office. Only a farm store, an antiques store and a few home-based businesses remain.

Residents have struggled to keep a sense of community, especially after the town's school closed in 1999.

"It used to be we knew every child in town and every dog," said Eicke, who was born in Washington in 1935.

"Now I don't know my neighbor," said Campbell, who has lived here 35 years.

Still, people here believe their town is worth fighting for. Many have joined the Papio Valley Preservation Association, a nonprofit group that in the 1980s successfully defeated plans for a similar dam project.

The association held an informational meeting Saturday in Kennard, four miles to the north, where 26 properties could be affected by high water. Several members have filed suit against the NRD to try and stop the building of a similar dam in Douglas County, which would be the first of the district's 10 proposed dams.

"We're not the Norman Rockwell life we used to be, but we're still pretty calm and peaceful," Campbell said. "You have to live here to feel it."

Welchert, a hair stylist who grew up in Washington, said the town is the perfect place to raise children. Her 19-month- old son, Josh, is the fourth generation of her family currently living in town.

"It's laid back. We don't have any problems. Every once in a while, we have problems with neighbors - 'The dog's barking too much' - but nothing too big," she said.

Lorene Andersen, whose home might have to be bought out or moved should the dams be approved, remains optimistic.

"We're hoping we can stop it," she said of the project. "We've done it once before."


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redfield
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Postby redfield » Mon Mar 21, 2005 1:09 pm

Businesses have come and gone, the railroad depot has left, and the town has lost its social gathering places, most recently its post office. Only a farm store, an antiques store and a few home-based businesses remain.

Residents have struggled to keep a sense of community, especially after the town's school closed in 1999.


That kinda says it all right there doesn't it? Sometimes an old dog has to get put to sleep to end the sufferring.

Then factor in the flood control and recreational benefits for the entire area, and this one shouldn't be a difficult decision.

I guess thats really easy for me to say, not having been born there or lived there. Then again, I grew up in the Ralston area, and would be the first to tell you Annex away.....

DTO Luv
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Postby DTO Luv » Mon Mar 21, 2005 1:10 pm

Once again people wanting to be next to Omaha but not wanting to share/allow progress. How the heck can 150 people complain about something that affects so many more people. If you live in a county that touches Omaha plan on being haunted by the growing city.
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