After a successful Safe Routes to School experience, Live Well Omaha Kids (under the direction of Live Well Omaha), secured funding from the Union Pacific Foundation to partner with Seventy Five North to launch a spinoff called Safe Routes to Healthy Places at the Highlander.

Safe Routes to Healthy Places is one of the first of its kind in the area and connects residents with safe routes to local assets such as schools, housing developments, parks, community centers, health clinics and grocery stores. This project works to ensure residents are safe and supported when biking, walking, and rolling to nearby destinations.

Highlander is located in a historic African-American neighborhood in North Omaha that has recently seen significant improvements in the built environment, education, health, and the social and community landscape, utilizing the nationally renowned Purpose Built Communities model.

“While we are excited about the revitalization taking place, we acknowledge that we can do more to encourage and support active transportation” said LaKaija Johnson, Community Liaison and Grad Fellow with Seventy Five North Revitalization Corp.

Active transportation is important to the Highlander neighborhood as it has been designed to include these unique amenities: a road diet, bike lanes, a bike sharing station, and solar-powered bus stops.

Live Well Omaha Kids and Seventy Five North test out a route for the 05/09 walk audit

Together, Live Well Omaha Kids and Seventy Five North have recruited residents and other community partners to form the Highlander Advisory Council. The Council is comprised of stakeholders whose diverse backgrounds and perspectives carefully consider the needs of all residents in decisions that might impact their Highlander experience.

Members include:

  • Seventy Five North Revitalization Corp.
  • Highlander residents
  • Charles Drew Health Center, Inc.
  • Creighton Accelerator
  • Live Well Omaha

On May 9, 2019, the Highlander Advisory Council and other community members will participate in a walk audit. A walk audit is a solution-focused, strengths based process of mapping assets and barriers to safe walking and bicycling by walking a typical route of a Highlander resident.

Live Well Omaha Kids’ Claudia Granillo captures input during the walk audit

The walk audit will be facilitated by Live Well Omaha Kids and participants will lend their perspectives to inform solutions that will improve neighborhood walkability for all. The findings from the walk audit will be used by the Highlander Advisory Council to create its Safe Routes action plan.

If you’d like to participate in the walk audit as a community member, please register here.

For media inquiries, please contact Sheena Helgenberger at sheena@livewellomaha.org

These images were captured by the talented photographer Cristian Mendo of Apricity Photo