Decades-long restoration project at Spring Lake complete

Published: Jul. 6, 2017 at 3:50 PM CDT
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After decades of organizing and working with city officials, people who live in the Spring Lake neighborhood are celebrating the restoration of Spring Lake Park.

The new Spring Park and Spring Park Lake are part of the Clean Solutions for Omaha – the federally mandated sewer separation project. Omaha is in the ninth year of the 18-year, $2.2 billion project.

Omaha city officials were happy with this part of the project and that they found a way to save $5 million to get the job done. Officials were able to use 18-inch pipes instead of 90-inch pipes in this restoration project. Mayor Jean Stothert said it saved a lot of taxpayer money.

“By rebuilding the lake here, we could install smaller pipes underground, use the lake to hold storm water run-off and achieve our goals, which are to reduce the overflow to the Missouri River and to provide community benefits, yet still meet the regulatory water quality standards,” said Stothert.

Storm water will filter through the wetlands. The lake is already stocked with blue gill, bass and catfish. The Nebraska Environmental Trust operates with money that comes from the Nebraska Lottery. They kicked in more than $1 million into the project.

“We’ve got the new trees being planted and the nice bike trail. So not only providing urban habitat storm water run-off benefits, but also just for the neighborhood: the kids the adults, a place for them to come down and enjoy,” said Mark Brohman of Nebraska Environmental Trust.

Everyone involved are hoping people will come out and enjoy the new Spring Lake Park.

The work isn't done just yet; city officials say there will be improvements made to the golf course. Neighbors say they would like to see a fountain in the lake.

The overall cost for this phase of the CSO program is just over $10 million. Officials say another $6.5 million will be spent on other improvements in the area this fall.

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