Omaha neighborhood residents concerned with new apartment complex development

Members of an Omaha neighborhood fought for months against a redevelopment project that they say will ruin their quality of life.
Published: Jul. 11, 2022 at 4:22 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - Members of an Omaha neighborhood have fought for months against a redevelopment project that they say will ruin their quality of life.

After several rounds of arguments, the neighbors are preparing for change.

Major changes are on the way for the area around Saddle Creek Road and Pacific Street. Plans call for a 195-unit apartment complex. Developers say the project will improve the area and bring in tax dollars and jobs.

All of that will change the quiet, nature-filled neighborhood behind the proposed development. Already houses have been boarded up to make way for construction, and neighbors are already noticing a change.

“We’ve had the police here more in the last three weeks than we’ve had in 30 years that we’ve been around,” area resident Alicia Franksen said. “People keep ripping those boards off and breaking into the building and stealing all the wires or whatever else they can take. “One night they took a whole air conditioning unit off of one of the houses.”

Franksen grew up in the area. She says she doesn’t understand why anyone would want to build in an area that floods during heavy rain

“When we had that big hail storm about a month ago this whole area flooded.”

There are some families who have lived in this neighborhood near Saddle Creek Road and Pacific Street for generations.

“We had four daughters,” area resident Sandra Doll said. “They grew up here, one of our daughters lives across the street from us.”

Neighbors are still upset and they believe they've run out of options.

Doll has lived in the neighborhood for 58 years. She’s concerned about more people moving into the area.

“I just worry about traffic. Parking on the street and we won’t be able to find a place to park.”

But homes in the neighborhood are boarded up and neighbors are bracing for change. Developers say it will be for the better.

“I suppose it’s for the better, but, I don’t know, I’m not happy about it.”

The project has been approved by the Omaha Planning Board and the City Council. Neighbors say there is a virtual informational meeting scheduled with developers Monday evening at 6 p.m.

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