Pershing Auditorium demolition application next step for redevelopment

Published: Sep. 16, 2021 at 9:23 PM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KOLN) - The Pershing redevelopment project is set to be a massive undertaking, but before anything new can be built, the old auditorium must be demolished.

It’s one aspect of a plan that must get approval from the board that would issue a demolition permit.

On Thursday, that plan was heard by the Historic Preservation Commission, a body whose opinions and suggestions are weighed by the Capitol Environs Commission which issues the permit. During its deliberations, no motion was required or made, but members did say on record they support the move to demolish.

The city has been working on this project for years now and said a constant between many of the proposals it considered is demolition, including the one it’s moving forward with now.

If demolition is approved at that next level, the city is free to move forward with it whenever it wants, but that approval does not include any plans for redevelopment. Those plans will have to be submitted and approved separately.

“Mixed-use residential, ground floor retail, civic use, and a library, and parking access from the 16th street area,” said Dan Marvin, the city’s Urban Development Director.

While the city doesn’t have any firm dates with timelines it’s presented on the project, this application for demolition puts it at just shy of halfway to the construction portion. Project design approval and a bond issue expected to go to voters to pay for a new central library are the other steps left to go.

That demolition permit application is set to be in front of the Capitol Environs Commission on September 24.

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