21 May 2014

Clarifications on Spring Lake Park CSO! Story

A story on the CSO! project now underway at Spring Lake was issued May 20th in the Omaha World-Herald. It focused especially on the new pond to be created in the woodland hollow north of F Street.

The second half of the piece discussed the proposed "piping" of the spring-fed brook south of F Street. During my research on this, it became apparent that the City of Omaha Public Works Department proposed to place forty feet of the creek into a pipe, for dam safety reasons. I'd never suggested that the entire creek would be impacted.

It needs to indicated that the Public Works Department decided that F Street would be designated as a dam. This is according to a representative of the Department of Natural Resources of the State of Nebraska, responsible for approving pertinent parts of the project design. A city official, when asked, agreed with. A CSO! representative said that the option to bury the creek was being done primarily because of cost considerations. He also indicated in later March, that the public did not "have a choice" in the matter.

According to a phone call and email from Jim Theiler, the CSO! project manager, Public Works is "... getting close on pulling some info together on alternatives to have less impacts on the stream." This is according to an email received on May 9. This situation is reflected in the article, where Ned Tramp is quoted as saying: "We are exploring options to leave the stream south of the F Street embankment undisturbed."

The value of the Spring Lake Park for birds was prominently mentioned in the article, with Janet Bonet, president of the Spring Lake Neighborhood Association, strongly indicating the value of the park (its creek, springs and woods) for local avifauna.
Chris Burbach. May 21, 2014. Spring Lake Park - coming soon: new fishing pond. Omaha World-Herald 149(195): 1B-2B, with two pictures.