The Omaha-based developer hopes to create a new entertainment district along the Northwest Highway.

OMAHA, Nebraska. (WOWT) – Plans are underway to create Omaha’s newest entertainment and residential district, as well as to permanently close part of North Saddle Creek Road.

The proposed plan, created by lead developer Joshua Hannum, will go through a first reading in the city council on Tuesday.

Hannum says the area, the corner of the Northwest Radial Highway and Hamilton Street, could be the next Blackstone or Dundee.

“We saw how good Blackstone is, Aksarben Village and all that, we said why not North Omaha? North of Cuming Street? I think it’s a pretty run down area, a lot of big developers don’t really go here, they don’t see much value north of Cuming Street, so we thought, why not?”

The first phase of Hannum’s development plans includes the construction of a 161-unit residential development at the southeast end of North Saddle Creek Road. It will include 7,500 square feet of amenities and 7,500 square feet of retail space for cafes, bars and restaurants.

The road will be permanently closed from NW Radial to Hamilton Street at the five-way junction, instead becoming four-way.

“I think it will revive [the area] significantly, it will bring more shopping experience, more dining experience, for people living in the neighborhood in the west, north, south and even east, it will be a kind of gathering place, like Dundee, like Benson.”

The vision for the area is to make it a walkable, walkable area.

Hannum says the response from neighboring businesses and residents has been positive.

“It’s great,” says Terry Finkle, owner of the famed Homy Inn.

The Homy Inn has been in the same location along North Saddle Creek Road for over 60 years.

“Hopefully revitalize it, bring more people to this area, like other areas, we have always been left behind here, so hopefully it will be good,” he says.

New apartments mean new business.

“Invite more people to Midtown and hopefully you know it will be accessible to everyone because there’s a bit of a housing shortage here.”

Hannum hopes to create a Business Development District in the area after approval from the city council.

In addition to city approval, sewer lines in the area will need to be relocated before construction can begin on the building. This project alone will cost $3.5 million and Hannum says it was difficult to find a contractor to do the job.

Hannum hopes to begin this construction and close part of North Saddle Creek by October of this year.

If it works, he says, construction on the new housing estate will begin in February 2023 and be completed in two years.

After this, further redevelopment is planned, moving west along North Saddle Creek Road.

“The tides lift all ships, and in the next 10 to 15 years we will see significant economic development in this area,” Hannum says.

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