City traffic engineers plan for 30th Street road diet


ALEXANDRA STONE ON THE PLAN TO MAKE IT MORE PEDESTRIAN FRIENDLY. REPORTER: CARS FLY BY ON 30TH STREET. PEDESTRIANS MANUEVER THE NARROW SIDEWALK LITTLE SEPARATING THEM FROM THE TRAFFIC. BUT OTHELLO MEADOWS PRESIDENT OF OMAHA’S 75 NORTH HAS DIFFERENT VISION FOR THIS STREET>>PEOPLE TREAT 30TH STREET LIKE A HIGHWAY AND SO WHAT WE WANT TO DO IS MAKE IT FEEL A LOT MORE LIKE A NEIGHBORHOOD STREET. REPORTER: 75 NORTH IS HEADING UP THE HIGHLANDER PROJECT AT 30TH AND PATRICK A MIXED USE, MIXED INCOME PROPERTY COMPLETE WITH HOUSING, BUSINESSES, EVENT SPACE, AND EDUCATION. NOW THEY WANT TO MAKE THE ROADWAYS SAFER. AND THE CITY’S PUBLIC WOR DEPARTMENT AGREES, SAYING IT IS TIME FOR 30TH STREET TO GO ON A DIET.>>THE PROPOSAL IS WE WOULD RESTIRCT THIS TO ONE LANE IN EACH DIRECTION WITH A CENT TURN LANE AND THEN ADD BIKE LANES. REPORTER: CITY TRAFFIC ENGINEER MURTHY KOTI OUTLINES THE ROAD DIET, REDUCING 30TH FROM 5 LANES OF TRAFFIC TO THREE, ALL THE WAY FROM CUMING TO AMES. THE EXTRA SPACE WILL ALLOW FOR BIKE LANES, STREET PARKING, AND IMPROVED SIDEWALKS. KOTI SAYS IT’S A MATTER OF NUMBERS. THIS CORRIDOR ACTUALLY HAS EXCESS CAPACITY. WHEN THE HIGHWAY, HIGHWAY 75 WAS BUILT PARALLEL TO THAT SEVERAL DECADES AGO, IT TOOK A LOT OF THE TRAFFIC AWAY FROM 30TH STREET AND MOVED IT TO THE HIGHWAY. REPORTER: KOTI SAYS THEY HOPE THIS PROJECT IS A CATALYST FOR GROWTH MAKING THE AREA BETTER FOR BUSINESS AND RESIDENTS AND MEADOWS HOPES SO TOO. COMBINING REDEVELOPMENT WITH SAFER STREETS.>>REALLY, IT IS AN IDEA CENTERED AROUND SORT OF CREATING A SPARK TO HELP A NEIGHBORHOOD ITSELF BE THE BEST IT CAN BE.

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