Capitol Environs | Nebraska State Capitol

Bertram Goodhue’s original 1920 Capitol design concept included the setting for his building within the capital city. Goodhue planned four formal boulevard approaches to the Capitol from the north, south, east and west on axis with the site and Capitol tower. The Capitol’s four square block site is located at the intersection of two principal streets which form the south and east edges of the business district. In 1987 a joint city-state Nebraska Capitol Environs Commission was created with statutory authority to oversee preservation and enhancement of the Capitol Environs District. The District is a fifty-four square block area which includes the Capitol site, the ring of blocks surrounding the site, and Goodhue’s four axial boulevards, or malls. The Capitol area and the city blocks which line both sides of the boulevards, or malls, define the formal setting of the Capitol in the city. Within the District, the Commission has statutory authority to set guidelines and oversee architectural, landscape and urban design issues, such as, building heights and setbacks, and building and landscape material requirements. In addition to the Environs District, the Commission has design review authority for City and Country View Corridors which preserve views of the Capitol from within the city and from as distant as twenty miles. The Commission meets monthly to review design issues and projects such as a planned north mall redevelopment linking the Capitol to the University of Nebraska-City Campus, and the development of a bicycle/pedestrian trail which enhances a principal Capitol view corridor from Lincoln’s largest park.