What’s the big deal?

Omaha has always been a great place to live but over the past decade Omaha has been on a roll! New developments and expansions in Downtown, Midtown, the University of Nebraska Medical Center (UNMC), the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO), and the Crossroads areas have created a vibrant urban community that demonstrates the potential of the City’s urban core.

However, without improved transit and mobility connections linking these great places to each other, and the rest of the City, Omaha will be hampered in its efforts to attract economic development and become a truly livable community. The Central Omaha Transit Alternatives Analysis is the first step in identifying transit options that will provide a safe, efficient, economical, attractive, and integrated transit system that offers convenient, accessible, and affordable mobility within Omaha’s urban core.

Process

The Central Omaha Transit Alternatives Analysis has been a two year process to evaluate the best transit options to serve this area. Now is the time to take this study from a plan to implementation. Your input will help to finalize the best recommendation to be adopted by the City Council and the Metro Board of Directors. The next phase will include preliminary engineering, environmental documentation and a full finance plan.

Initial and Final Screening

The evaluation of potential alternatives and transit technologies includes two phases: Initial Screening and Final Screening. Initial Screening evaluation analyzed the initial list of alternatives using a set of qualitative evaluation criteria. Its purpose was to eliminate alternatives that had fatal flaws, didn’t meet project goals, or didn’t have public support. The alternatives that advanced from Initial Screening are being evaluated in more detail in the Final Screening phase and to help to identify a transit solution to serve the Central Omaha area.

Purpose and Need -> Definition of Alternatives -> Initial Screening -> Final Screening -> Locally Preferred Alternative

Goals

The goal of the Central Omaha Transit Alternatives Analysis is to identify a safe, efficient, affordable, attractive, and connected transit system that offers convenient, accessible, and affordable mobility within the study area. The goals are to:

  • Improve mobility within downtown and midtown Omaha.
  • Enhance Omaha’s economic competitiveness and encourage economic development.
  • Maximize the efficiency and effectiveness of local and federal transit investments.
  • Support local and regional land use and development goals and enhance the use of transit-supported land use, planning, and design strategies.
  • Provide a sustainable transit investment that is compatible with the built environment.
  • Provide a transit investment that can be implemented within budget constraints for capital and operating expenses.

Study Area

The initial study area boundaries included the Missouri River on the east, 72nd Street on the west, Cuming Street on the north, and Center Street on the south. The removal of the Aksarben area from the study occurred following the Initial Screening because it wasn’t economically feasible and because the area can be served by other connections within the existing Metro bus sytem.

Project Team

Metro The City of Omaha