Thursday, June 21, 2018
Text Size

Viaduct proposed on west side

Council has hearing, will decide whether to move forward.
A Lincoln architectural and engineering firm recommends the construction of a viaduct on the west edge of Gothenburg.
Schemmer officials presented their findings to the Gothenburg City Council and public at a meeting Oct. 19.
The recommended concept would connect Highway 47 at  First Street—just south of Baldwin Filters.


Motorists would follow First Street west to Avenue A and continue in a northwesterly direction before turning north and traveling over the Union Pacific Railroad Tracks and Highway 30.
The viaduct would begin about a quarter mile west of Second Avenue and descend to existing grade at approximately 16th Street.
Travelers would continue  on a roadway north before  curving to the east and connecting to Nebraska Highway 47 just south of Road 768.
The structure would consist of two, 12-foot travel lanes, two eight-foot shoulders and a 10-foot, sidewalk/trail, according to Mark Lutjeharms, manager of traffic engineering.
Lutjeharms estimated the project to cost about $15.8 million which also includes connecting roadways, utility relocations, easement and right-of-way purchases, design engineering and construction engineering.
Schemmer officials were hired by the council to evaluate the feasibility of an additional viaduct and determine a location that provides for improved public safety, reduction in vehicular delay and minimizes disruption and impacts to surrounding properties.
Lutjeharms said the study also assesses the appropriateness of connecting an additional viaduct to new roadways that would divert traffic now traveling along Lake Avenue.
To obtain Nebraska Department of Roads and Union Pacific funding, a minimum of two public crossings would be closed which Schemmer assumed would be Lake Avenue and Cottonwood Drive.
After Schemmer was hired to do the study, the firm contracted with Iteris to do a traffic engineering analysis to assess the impacts of the various alternatives.
Three other preliminary concepts of a second viaduct were also prepared—two are on the eastern edge of town and another on the western edge.
All concepts, including the recommended one, would span both the Union Pacific Railroad and Highway 30 and would accommodate pedestrians and bicyclists.
Other concepts include:
a proposal on the west edge of town that connects to Highway 47 on Fourth Street instead of First Street.
Otherwise the concept is generally similar to the recommended plan on the west edge of Gothenburg.
Estimated cost: $16.3 million.
a concept that begins at Highway 47 and follows Fourth Street east before turning north and continuing in a northeasterly direction and crossing the railroad and Highway 30 at Avenue L where it continues along Avenue M to 27th Street and reconnects with Highway 47.
Estimated cost: $14.8 million.
a fourth plan, which is similar to the other east alternative except that

Find the complete story in our print edition. Receive the entire issue of the Gothenburg Times on-line in PDF format each Wednesday for only $25 per year. Call 308-537-3636 to subscribe.