A fascination with historic buildings, underground places, interesting architecture and unique characters has led to our series, The Unexpected. Check out Sales & Leasing Agent Colleen Mason’s take on the many facets of Omaha.

Most Omahans refer to it as 13th Street, the street so many see blur by at 45 mph, to and from downtown Omaha.

To me, it’s so much more than 13th Street or South Downtown, it’s Little Bohemia. An area that contains an abundance of history and its own version of charm.

Raba Meat Market, Est. 1915

Raba Meat Market, Est. 1915

Beginning in the late 1800’s, Little Bohemia was the central business district for recent Czech immigrants. Businesses included a hotel, bank, restaurants, bars, butchers, doctors, lawyers and a general store. The area is now home to an eclectic mix of industrial, retail and residential users…who I refer to as “The Believers.”

Twelve years ago, I moved my former business and residence to 13th Street. At the time, I seriously questioned the decision- the area was so different from my West Omaha roots. I moved into the Gallagher Building, the only building on 13th Street listed on the National Register of Historic Places. I immediately knew I was where I was supposed to be – it suited me and I fell in love with it.

The Gallagher Building at 1902 S. 13th St.

The Gallagher Building at 1902 S. 13th St.

The building awakened my curiosity in historic architecture. I now paid attention to what was behind the steel siding, boarded-up windows and 70’s facades. The Gallagher Building taught me to appreciate the unexpected, the love of historic buildings and the stories that come with them.

I left the area a little over a year ago, when I ventured into commercial real estate. I knew I’d return clash royale hack 2017 ios someday, and, with our recent acquisition of three buildings along 13th, I find myself totally immersed in the area again. The buildings remind me of how truly special and one-of-a-kind 13th Street is. I’ve fallen back in love. In love with the buildings we’re redeveloping, the business owners that I’ve known for years and the homeowners that have been there for decades.

“The Believers” and I are one in the same, all in love with this beautifully gritty, urban and eclectic neighborhood that has seen better days, but believe its best is still yet to come.

I’d love to hear about your experiences in Little Bohemia, 13th Street, or any area of Omaha that has made you believe. What are some of the unique sights, sounds and, yes, smells, that take you back to the moments your memories were made?

 

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