The groundbreaking for Avenue One, a mixed-use property, took place Thursday morning. Developers hope the area will serve as Omaha’s “Western Gateway.”
“After 17 years of effort, we finally, officially, get to call this Avenue One, and we’re open for business,” said Curt Hofer, CEO of Jasper Stone Partners.
In 2002, Hofer bought 20 acres of land near 192nd and Dodge. Over the next 14 years, he slowly acquired more than 180 acres.
“We knew we had bought ground in the right address, it was just a matter of when this thing is actually going to take off,” said Hofer.
The $1.2 billion development will feature a business park, shops, restaurants, hotels, apartments and 6 miles of walking trails.
“It’s just going to open up this area and make it more inviting,” said Omaha Mayor Jean Stothert.
“Once the streets and the sewer get here, you’ll see vertical construction coming out of the ground starting the end of next year,” said Hofer.
Construction along 192nd Street is already underway, expanding the road from two lanes to six. The plans to reconstruct the intersection of 192nd and Dodge should be finished by 2024.
There is one part of the plan for the area around Avenue One with uncertainty.
“What I call a ‘western gateway.’ A Memorial Park, Elmwood Park remake, except out west,” said Hofer.
The pedestrian bridge would cross Dodge west of 192nd, connecting Avenue One and Youngman Park.
“What we would have is not a vehicular-centric project, but now a pedestrian, people-centered project, and we’d love to see that happen,” said Hofer.
“If we can connect this with the beautiful park and the lake that we have across Dodge, that will only make it more inviting,” said Stothert.