Beacon News

Construction Industry News: Mutual of Omaha ´╗┐Plans New Headquarters Tower for Downtown Omaha, NE

Earlier this year, Mutual of Omaha and the Mayor of Omaha announced plans for a new $433-million skyscraper to be built in downtown Omaha. Although the project must still be formally approved by the Omaha City Council, many details about the project have been released by the city and Mutual of Omaha. The proposed tower (known as "Project Beacon") would be between 40 and 50 stories tall, up to 650 feet in height, with 800,000 square feet of office space and 2200 parking spaces. Depending on the final approved design, the tower could end up being the city's tallest building.

The skyscraper will be part of a bigger plan to revitalize Omaha's urban core, with the goal of adding 30,000 new jobs and 30,000 new residents to downtown Omaha over the next two decades. Another key part of the downtown redevelopment will be a state-of-the-art, 3-mile-long, $300-million street car system which will be free to all riders. The streetcar will run from a riverfront park to the University of Nebraska Medical Center. If formally approved in the months ahead, construction on the skyscraper and the street car system could start as early as January of 2023, with completion by 2026.

Proponents of the project (and similar urban-core-development projects around the U.S.) point to the benefits that such new buildings can bring to downtown neighborhoods: In addition to bringing well-paying jobs, new office buildings and improved public transportation mean more economic opportunities for small businesses supporting the downtown area, follow-on residential development, new parks, and cultural opportunities which need a critical mass to happen. Members of the Omaha business community have also pointed out the need to attract younger people to the city, including college students, by enhancing economic opportunities, the quality of life, and cultural offerings available in the city's downtown area.