Mayor forms committee for unimproved street plan

Posted at 5:13 PM, Dec 28, 2016

Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert says she is preparing to do something about the dirty and unkept gravel roads all across town.

Mayor Stothert wants the city to offer help to neighborhoods willing to put in money to completely re-do their streets.

Omaha Public Works says decades ago some developers put down asphalt, which wasn't up to city code and didn't last.  They're now so bad the city won't repair them because they need to be replaced.

Mayor Stothert is forming a committee that represents the entire metro to put together a plan to reconstruct the road with concrete or put down asphalt depending on what the residents want.

"The question is if all 300 lane miles want their roads improved to concrete, how do you decide who is first who is second?  Do you do it according to the condition of the road?  Do we grade those roads and do those that are most deteriorated first?  Do we make those that have been reclaimed first?" Mayor Stothert questioned.

Recently, the city has given funds to a few street improvement districts that have been willing to pay for part of the improvements themselves.

The mayor says the residents on the street would have to share in the cost.  If not it would be $200-300 million to pay for them with taxpayer money.

The 6-year Capital Improvement Plan has more than $6 million for unimproved streets.

The committee will first meet on January 11, and the mayor hopes to have a proposal to the city council this spring.