Omaha Streetcar Predicted To Cover Project Costs

A third party analysis predicts that the revenue brought in by development along the proposed streetcar line would bring in sufficient revenue to cover initial costs.

Read Time: 1 minute

December 8, 2022, 10:00 AM PST

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

View of Omaha, nebraska skyline with river in foreground

Kristopher Kettner / Omaha, Nebraska

The Omaha streetcar project is one step closer to reality after an independent consulting firm, MuniCap, concluded that the financial plan presented by the city is viable and would stimulate more than enough revenue to cover the cost of the project. As Jessica Wade reports for the Omaha World-Herald, the revenue projections in the analysis surpass prior estimates.

“MuniCap’s analysis leans heavily on assumptions, including estimates of future property values, the rate of tax credits, the strength of Omaha’s economy and little change in zoning laws,” Wade explains. “If those assumptions hold, the firm predicts that a special district along the streetcar route will see more than $600 million in tax-increment financing revenues through 2057.”

The plan relies on $80 million in lease purchasing bonds and $360 million in redevelopment bonds to cover capital costs, which would be repaid by tax-increment financing (TIF). After the streetcar is built, “New developments on three blocks on either side of the streetcar would contribute 25% of their TIF proceeds. That element alone is projected to generate more than $421 million.”

Tuesday, December 6, 2022 in Omaha World-Herald

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