OMAHA, Neb. --
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has released a Supplemental Draft Environmental Impact Statement (SDEIS) in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) for Nebraska Highway 12 (N-12) Niobrara East & West (Project) in Knox County. The SDEIS describes the Applied-for Project by the Nebraska Department of Transportation (NDOT); a road rehabilitation of N-12 which incorporates an elevation increase to the 100-year flood elevation plus three feet. Alternatives to this proposal have also been reviewed, with all alternatives within the existing N-12 corridor, and are described in the SDEIS. The purpose of the Project is to improve the safety and reliability of the roadway and meet current NDOT design standards.
A draft EIS for N-12 was released Oct. 9, 2015, with a base of bluffs preferred alternative (A7). A public open house and hearing was held Nov. 9, 2015. After the public comment period ended, NDOT elected to withdraw its Section 404 permit application Nov. 20, 2015. Since that time, NDOT has developed a modified project purpose and need (road rehabilitation within the existing N-12 corridor), and alternatives responsive to this purpose and need. The SDEIS analyzes and discloses the direct, indirect and cumulative effects on the human and natural environment of various alternatives that would lessen flooding issues and address N-12 roadway deficiencies east and west of Niobrara, Nebraska.
The Corps is soliciting written comments during the 45-day public comment period from the public; federal, state, and local agencies and officials; Native American Tribes; and other interested parties. All written comments must be submitted to Ms. Becky Latka at the address listed below by Feb. 17, 2020.
NDOT has applied for a Section 404 Clean Water Act permit from the Corps for the Project. A public notice for the permit application and the SDEIS release is out concurrent with the Federal Register notice of availability, and comments are being solicited on the permit application as well as the SDEIS.
The SDEIS and executive summary can be viewed and downloaded from the Corps’ Nebraska Regulatory N-12 Project webpage:
One or both of these documents are also available for review at the following locations:
- Niobrara Public Library / Civic Center, 25414 Park Ave #3, Niobrara, NE 68760
- Verdigre Public Library, 101 E 3rd Ave, Verdigre, NE 68783
- Tyndall City Library, 110 E 17th Ave, Tyndall, SD 57066
- Springfield City Library, 605 8th St, Springfield, SD 57062
- U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Gavins Point Project Office, Lewis and Clark Visitor Center, 55245 NE-121, Crofton, NE 68730
- Corps of Discovery Welcome Center, 89705 US-81, Crofton, NE 68730
- Knox County Extension Office, 308 Bridge Street, Center, NE 68724
- U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Nebraska Regulatory Office, 8901 S 154th St #1, Omaha, NE 68138
Questions on the project, the NEPA process, the anticipated schedule, as well as submission of written comments regarding the SDEIS, can be addressed to: