Restoration Exchange extends preservation kudos to Friends of the Bridge and the City of Omaha for the renovation of the Dodge Street Overpass, which began earlier this month. The $240,000 effort is being funded by city bridge maintenance monies and more than 150 private donations.
Set for completion in mid-August, the project includes encased lead paint remediation, repainting, deck resurfacing, and new historical and landmark signage. The connecting trail heading south into Elmwood Park is also being upgraded, and the O! public art piece at the north base of the bridge is being refurbished.
“From a popular walking and biking path to a place to promote events and causes, the Dodge Street Overpass is one of Omaha’s well-recognized landmarks,” said Kristine Gerber, Restoration Exchange executive director. “A shout out to all those involved in making this iconic overpass last another 50+ years.”
As Omaha expanded westward in the mid-1960s, community leaders and the City of Omaha recognized the need for public safety along the busy Dodge Street corridor. Public support included an emphasis on an aesthetically pleasing design. Upon its completion in 1968, the William H. Durand designed overpass was recognized as the “Most Beautiful Bridge” by the American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC).
A poster exhibit detailing the history of the bridge is currently on display at the Barbara Weitz Community Engagement Center on the University of Nebraska at Omaha campus. It’s free and open to the public. For more information or to donate to the project, visit www.dodgestreetoverpass.org.