Omaha City Council to vote on affordable housing action plan

A plan to build affordable housing in Douglas County is discussed
Published: Dec. 10, 2022 at 12:17 PM CST
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - The Omaha City Council is scheduled to vote on its affordable housing action plan next week.

Many agree there is a great need for affordable housing in the city and city officials believe Omaha needs more affordable and market-rate housing.

Right now construction crews are preparing a site near 38th and Dodge for more than 130 market-rate apartment units. City officials say this construction is part of the city’s master plan.

“It’s right on the ORBT line, you got Clarkson College right down here at the Med Center, Mutual of Omaha so the ORBT line is right out the front door here where it helps with the transit and getting people moving around when they come live here,” said Danny Begley with the Omaha City Council.

“It’s part of the city’s masterplan to build the urban core up and this is definitely a good step in that direction right on Dodge Street to do that.”

This is just one of the projects that will bring more housing to the Dodge Street corridor.

There are also plans to knock down an old laundromat near 40th and Dodge to build more apartments. Officials say an old, vacant gas station will be demolished to make way for a five-story apartment complex near 48th and Dodge that will have more than 300 apartment units.

New projects to improve an Omaha neighborhood

“We understand safe, affordable housing is the foundation of thriving neighborhoods.”

At a recent council meeting, there were people who made it clear affordable housing is also needed in the metro.

Many people agreed with the city’s idea, but many also wondered about the plan.

“It’s obvious that you have a lot of support for this, the devil is in the details.”

“I just think the implementation of this is going to be the important part.”

City Council officials say it’s something that will have to be worked out because the need for affordable housing in the city is great.

“It has been studied and quantified that we’re about 80,000 units short of affordable housing over the next 20 to 30 years,” said City Council President Pete Festersen. “We’re hoping to make a big dent in that in the next couple of years with some $60 million worth of funding that the city has reinvested publicly and privately just this year.”

If approved, the amendment of the city’s master plan regarding the housing affordability action plan will go into effect 15 days after council approval.