Location: Iowa

Iowa City Seeks To Regain Bike-Friendly Status

Just as Kansas City looks to embrace bikes, Iowa City, Iowa is also aiming to make its community more bicycle-friendly. But in Iowa City’s case, they’re hoping to get re-certified, and get back what they once had:

Iowa City, once designated a bicycle friendly community by the League of American Bicyclists, was denied the moniker last year after the group tightened its standards. As part of Bike to Work Week, about 25 people attended a forum at the Iowa City Public Library to talk about reclaiming the title.

College towns are represented liberally on last year’s list of bike friendly communities, but the league gave Iowa City an honorable mention. The group lauded the city’s percentage of bike commuters, installation of way-finding signage and other efforts but said more could be done to expand bike use.

A recent survey showed almost 900 people here commute by bike, Iowa City Assistant Transportation Planner Kris Ackerson told the group. That number doesn’t include people who ride to school.

“I think a lot of people were surprised the city got an honorable mention instead of a level higher,” Ackerson said. He said the city will start to develop a bike master plan this fall and will work with nearby cities on a regional plan.

Ackerson said city staffers are looking into painted pavement markings, informally called “sharrows”, that would help motorists know where to look for bikes, and show bikers where they should ride on the road.

In removing Iowa City’s Bicycle Friendly Community designation, the league said that the city needed to “implement a comprehensive bike plan, increase the number of main routes with wide shoulders or bike lanes and educate people about bicycling,” in order to make the city more bike-friendly.

Read more: Ways explored for making Iowa City safer for bicyclists.

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About The Author

By Randy Rasa, editor/webmaster at Kansas Cyclist, the web's premier Kansas cycling information site, featuring authoritative guides to Kansas cycling clubs, bike shops, organized bike rides, touring, trails, and much more. [learn more]

One response to “Iowa City Seeks To Regain Bike-Friendly Status”

  1. […] being raised, and communities who are not improving may lose their designation, as happened to Iowa City, Iowa in 2007. So for Lawrence to retain their bronze-level designation means that the city is still […]