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The Chamber of Commerce's 11-part strategy to improve Omaha transportation

The Chamber of Commerce's 11-part strategy to improve Omaha transportation

The Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce has an 11-part plan for a modern, multi-modal, big-city transportation system for the metro area.

The Greater Omaha Chamber of Commerce, through its ConnectGO initiative, is proposing a new regional transportation strategy for metropolitan Omaha.

Central to the strategy is the idea that Omaha needs a more broad-based transportation system — a system that looks beyond cars to move people around the city.

The plan urges a new midtown streetcar, more rapid transit bus lines, dozens of new miles of bike lanes and trails, and more walkable neighborhoods and business districts, along with street improvements.

Here is the chamber’s 11-part strategy, or what it calls the “10+M Strategy”: a 10-part strategy of transportation improvements, plus further focus on Omaha’s newly implemented street maintenance plan.

1. ORBT: Starting two additional bus rapid transit lines, with the next one running north to south.

2. Bus improvements: Running bus routes more frequently, improving bus stops and expanding the bus system into Sarpy County and Council Bluffs.

3. Urban core mobility system: Creating a coherent transportation system for Omaha’s urban center in downtown and midtown, with a streetcar line, shared parking districts, more two-way streets and new bikeways.

4. Streetscapes: Improving five historic commercial districts that have not been specified.

5. Sidewalks: Filling in 100 miles of sidewalk gaps near elementary schools and transit routes.

6. On-street bike lanes and trails: Developing 100 new miles of bike lanes regionally and 50 new miles of trails.

7. Multimodal Missouri River bridge: Building a new transit and trail bridge between Omaha and Council Bluffs south of the current Interstate 480 bridge.

8. Traffic signal system: Stepping up smart traffic signal implementation in Omaha and the suburbs, in which the street signals respond to current traffic demand. They don’t mean that you sail through all green lights, but they can help, for instance, if a crash reroutes a flood of traffic to a single street.

9. Major roadways: Widening roads more strategically and refining truck routes.

10. Transportation demand management: Working with employers on transportation plans and commuting options for their employees.

M. Maintenance: Continuing Omaha’s new street rehabilitation program and expanding it to other jurisdictions.

Omaha World-Herald: Afternoon Update

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