Omaha says goodbye to old Gene Leahy Mall

OMAHA, NE (Omaha World-Herald News Service) – Officials gathered in downtown Omaha Thursday to dedicate the future of the Gene Leahy Mall.

Mayor Jean Stothert, local philanthropists and the Metropolitan Entertainment and Convention Authority broke ground Thursday afternoon on the next version of the Mall.

The new version could cost up to 290 million dollars, most of it privately raised.

The public will chip in about 50 million in city bonds, plus about 3 million a year in expected annual maintenance costs that will be privately matched.

Developer Jay Noddle, representing MECA, says the new park will help make Omaha a quote “first-choice city” with the younger generations.