Most People Don’t Know There’s A Subway Hiding Under This City In Nebraska
When you hear “subway,” you probably think of either trains or sandwiches. This subway in Omaha is neither of those, but it is an interesting part of the city’s history – one that you can visit yourself.
In the scenic Dundee/Happy Hollow area at 51st & Dodge, you'll see this unassuming little sign marking the historic subterranean passage.
Come closer and the downward ramp becomes visible. The passageway was built in 1934 as a part of the New Deal infrastructure renewal efforts.
It was one of two such underground pedestrian walkways built beneath Dodge at that time - the other being at 33rd & Dodge - but this is the only one remaining. It's been on the National Register of Historic Places since 2010.
The passageway fell into disrepair for quite some time and was in danger of being closed, but a concerted neighborhood effort raised $40,000 to upgrade the tunnel. The improved walkway was unveiled in 2015.
The upgrade added more lights and safety features, improved the poor drainage, and created a subterranean art gallery featuring murals from local artists. An additional upgrade in 2020 added security cameras.
Yes, it can still look a little creepy as you descend - it
is an underground tunnel, after all - but the neighborhood has worked hard to make this a safe, fun, and historic destination.
Walking through the tunnel gives you a chance to see the beautiful artwork created by UNO students in 2015.
The murals depict scenes from Dundee, including the iconic four-sided clock at 50th & Underwood.
Unfortunately, the artwork is often the target of vandals, but the addition of security cameras is hopefully reducing those problems. When we visited in the summer of 2021, the murals looked well maintained.
The tunnel runs north-south under the east-west Dodge Street. When you emerge, you'll feel like you've just experienced a side of old Omaha that most people never see.
Take a few minutes to appreciate this unique pedestrian passageway, the likes of which you won't find anywhere else in Omaha. (We hear you, Omahans - there
are other subterranean tunnels in the city, but that's a story for another time.)
While this "subway" might not be what you were picturing, we think it's even better than an underground train. It's a wonderful piece of Omaha history that every history buff should plan to visit.
You can find the Omaha Subway on either side of Dodge on 51st Street. Have you ever visited the tunnel? Tell us all about your experiences in the comments!!
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Dundee-Happy Hollow Historic District, Omaha, NE, USA