City Officials Say $61.4 Million in Street Improvements Create Better, Safer Lincoln
Road closed (Getty Images)

LINCOLN–(News Release Oct. 6)–Mayor Leirion Gaylor Baird and Liz Elliott, Lincoln Transportation and Utilities (LTU) Director, today discussed significant community-wide transportation improvements resulting from $61.4 million in street investments over the past year. The $61.4 million invested from September 2021 to September 2022 increases the total street investment since 2019 to $167 million.

Whether transporting workers to jobs, children to schools or first responders to emergencies, well-maintained streets are critical to all Lincoln residents, Mayor Gaylor Baird said.

“Streets are vital to growing economic opportunity, enhancing public safety, and supporting our high quality of life,” she said.

Mayor Gaylor Baird highlighted numerous benefits enjoyed by Lincoln travelers:

  • 75% of Lincoln arterial and collector streets are in good to very good condition.
  • Commute times for Lincoln residents are nearly 10 minutes less than the national average.
  • 24-7 Wallstreet website ranks Lincoln as the ninth-safest city (out of 194 cities) in which to drive.
  • The likelihood of a collision in Lincoln is 7.7% less than the U.S. average, according to 24-7 Wallstreet.

Director Elliott said residents continue to benefit from the major improvements that have taken place in all corners of the city in 2022.

“Every division within LTU works together to offer growth and improvement opportunities across the community. This investment has delivered real results as street projects have improved more than 28 miles of streets in Lincoln this year,” Elliott said.

Projects of note in 2022 include:

  • West “A” Improvement Project – As one of Lincoln’s largest street and utility projects in city history, LTU and its partners have laid 22 football fields worth of concrete during the first half of the project. Other features include improvements to two-and-a-half miles of streets and utilities, new roundabouts to increase safety, a walking and biking trail, and bus stop pads for the blossoming development in this area.
  • LTU has conducted improvements and construction projects on 28 miles of streets, which include 52,000 tons of asphalt and 38,000 square yards of concrete laid, 4,000 linear feet of curb and gutter replacements, and 2,600 linear feet of sidewalk repair.
  • More than 18,600 potholes have been filled this year, including 250 community requests.
  • Nearly 3,000 lane blocks of cracks have been sealed to help extend the life of Lincoln streets.
  • Progress to achieve national school zones standards continues with 10 school zones being improved this year and 21 total school zones improved since 2020.
  • Dozens of street improvement projects were conducted this year in neighborhoods in all quadrants of the city such as Belmont, Union College, South Salt Creek, Wedgewood, Clinton, Near South and more.

City Council member James Michael Bowers said street projects are improving the lives of Lincoln residents across the community.

“Residents and business owners tell me that repaved streets, along with rebuilt sidewalks and ramps, are helping them drive, bike, and walk more safely and more conveniently every day,” Bowers said. “The City Council has worked hard with the Mayor to provide resources in the City budget to fuel these great street improvements.”

Tracy Corr, Chair of the Mayor’s Neighborhood Roundtable and President of the 40th and “A” Street Neighborhood Association, said that good streets are important to the overall health of neighborhoods.

“Thanks to the investments in our neighborhoods, we see kids biking to school safely on newly paved streets, families walking together on repaired sidewalks, and traffic flowing smoothly and safely because of street work over the past year,” Corr said.

Lincoln Chamber of Commerce president Jason Ball said improved streets support businesses and the overall growth of the City.

“Making important investment in our community’s infrastructure not only enables trade and encourage economic growth, it connects more workers to their jobs and helps revitalize many of the neighborhoods throughout our community spurring economic development,” Ball said.

For more information, visit lincoln.ne.gov/projects or contact Thomas Shafer, LTU Assistant Director, at 402-525-5644 or [email protected]. Visit the LTU projects website at lincoln.ne.gov/projects.