Transportation

Iowa DOT / https://hb.511ia.org/

The Iowa Department of Transportation reopened a 10-mile stretch of Interstate 29 in western Iowa around 2 p.m. Monday. 

Iowa DOT / https://hb.511ia.org/

The Iowa Department of Transportation re-closed a 10-mile section of Interstate-29 in western Iowa Sunday morning, prompted by flooding from the once-again rising Missouri River. A detour is in place. 

Iowa DOT / http://hb.511ia.org

The Iowa Department of Transportation has reopened a 10-mile stretch of Interstate 29 in western Iowa, after flooding closed it late last month. 

Iowa DOT / https://hb.511ia.org

Sections of Interstate-29 and Interstate-680 in western Iowa that have been closed for the last week due to area flooding are now open again to motorists, the Iowa Department of Transportation announced Friday afternoon.

courtesy Iowa DOT

A three-year-long construction project to improve safety at the U.S. 30 - Interstate 35 interchange in Ames is nearly complete.

MissLLJ/Flickr / https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/

Iowa City is moving forward with its first-ever bike share. On Tuesday, the council authorized the city to contract with a company called Gotcha to roll out a program city leaders say will help meet the needs of low income residents and cut greenhouse gas emissions.

Iowa National Guard cameramen

People in Sioux City are remembering the life of Captain Al Haynes, the pilot of United Airlines Flight 232 that crash-landed there 30 years ago. Haynes died Sunday in Seattle from a brief illness.

Amy Mayer/IPR

The roar of diesel buses, and more importantly the pollution they emit, will be reduced when CyRide, a partnership between Iowa State University, its students and the city of Ames, gets its first two all-electric buses.

CyRide received a $1.66 million grant from the Federal Transit Authority’s Low or No Emission Bus Program for the buses and the changes to the garage that will be necessary to accommodate charging them.

Sioux County Sheriff's Office

Authorities are looking into the cause of a freight train derailment in northwest Iowa.

Iowa National Guard

Thirty years ago today, a United Airlines plane crashed-landed in Sioux City and killed 112 people; 184 survived.

Dean Borg/IPR

Rail workers using specialized heavy equipment are clearing wreckage from an early Thursday morning Union Pacific derailment in Stanwood in east central Iowa.

The train was traveling on one of Iowa’s busiest rail lines, carrying coal eastward through the state.  Several coal cars derailed, stalling the train in the Cedar County town, and blocking Iowa Highway 38 northward.  Those cars have since been moved, resuming highway traffic on Iowa 38.

The Union Pacific railroad runs parallel to U.S. Highway 30, and the derailment is one block north.

MissLLJ/Flickr / https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/2.0/

Cedar Rapids is kicking off its first bike share program today, coinciding with Bike to Work Week, a national push to encourage cycling. Supporters hope the service will make Cedar Rapids more accessible and attractive to residents and and visitors.

Katie Peikes / IPR

Flooding has heavily damaged some southwest Iowa county roads. The roads are a major hurdle preventing some displaced people from returning to their homes.

Photo Courtesy of the Iowa DOT

The Iowa Department of Transportation is working to assess damages to highways as water recedes in southwest Iowa. The damages look daunting in photos.

senator jake chapman
John Pemble / IPR

This story was updated at 11:55 a.m., Wednesday, March 27, 2019.

Iowa senators voted Tuesday to ban traffic cameras in the state for the third year in a row. But the proposal is not likely to gain enough support in the House of Representatives, where lawmakers have considered regulating traffic cameras.

Those who support banning traffic cameras say they violate due process rights and are a money-making scheme for local governments.

Rick Fredericksen / IPR file

Woodbury County supervisors on Tuesday approved an ordinance to ensure large trucks don’t apply loud compression brakes on some county roads, but critics of the ordinance still believe it is unenforceable.

Amanda Bengtson/Flickr

Woodbury County supervisors are considering an ordinance that would prohibit trucks from using loud compression brakes on some county roads, but other western Iowa counties that have a similar ordinance in place say it’s difficult to enforce.

Iowa DOT

Travelers in central Iowa may face some short-term inconveniences where Interstate 35 meets U.S. 30 in Ames, but the new overpass currently under construction should ultimately make the interchange safer.

During several nights this month, the northbound lanes of I-35 have closed overnight as contractors placed beams over the road on new abutments. Soon, that work will finish and southbound travelers will face detours.

Keven Arrowsmith / Iowa Department of Transportation

Work has wrapped up on a 60-year project to widen a state highway stretching from eastern to western Iowa. Officials will celebrate the conversion of U.S. Highway 20 to a four-lane road on Friday.

Courtesy of Sioux County Sheriffs Office

Crews are working to rebuild a collapsed bridge in northwest Iowa after nearly 40 rail cars derailed and more than a dozen fell into the Floyd River.

Army Corps of Engineers Rock Island District / http://www.mvr.usace.army.mil/Missions/Navigation/Lock-and-Dam-Information/Peoria-Lock-and-Dam/

Congress is allocating billions of dollars to expand the work of the Army Corps of Engineers, as past of a larger funding package that includes the Departments of Defense, Labor, and Health and Human Services. But adequate funding to replace the aging locks and dams on the Mississippi River is not part of the deal. 

Jeff Dzadon/Flickr

A recent analysis ranks Iowa as having the ninth worst infrastructure in the country.

The state’s rural county bridges may be what spurred the poor rating by content and analysis company 24/7 Wall St, according to Aaron Granquist, a project manager who’s overseeing the state’s upcoming infrastructure report card.

traffic camera
Adrian Pingstone / Wikipedia

The Iowa Supreme Court ruled Friday that the Iowa Department of Transportation does not have the authority to regulate cities’ traffic cameras.

In a 6-0 opinion, Supreme Court justices agreed the IDOT cannot order Des Moines, Cedar Rapids and Muscatine to remove or relocate traffic cameras. The state legislature would have to pass a law specifically granting the IDOT the authority to make and enforce rules for cities’ traffic cameras.

John Pemble/IPR file photo

The Iowa Supreme Court heard arguments Tuesday in a case that could determine whether the Iowa Department of Transportation (IDOT) has the power to regulate cities’ traffic cameras.

Des Moines, Cedar Rapids and Muscatine are challenging a 2015 IDOT order to remove some of their traffic cameras. The cities have been ordered to stop issuing tickets from the cameras in question while this case is being considered by the state’s highest court.

traffic camera
Adrian Pingstone / Wikipedia

The Iowa Supreme Court will hear oral arguments Tuesday in one of four cases involving traffic cameras.

Des Moines, Cedar Rapids and Muscatine argue the Iowa Department of Transportation doesn’t have the authority to regulate how cities enforce their traffic laws.

In 2015, the IDOT ordered the three cities to remove some of their speed cameras. The cities sued, and in 2017, a district court upheld the IDOT order. The cities appealed to the Iowa Supreme Court.

Seabamirum via flickr creative commons / https://www.flickr.com/photos/seabamirum/

Iowa schools with disproportionately high transportation costs are getting a funding boost from the state. But the one-time increase won’t get them very far.

bisignano
Katarina Sostaric / IPR

The Iowa Senate Tuesday passed a bill to ban traffic cameras in the state, with mostly Republicans voting in favor of the measure.

Democrats offered several amendments that would allow traffic cameras when justified by data, and allow speed cameras near schools and road construction zones.

Sen. Brad Zaun (R-Urbandale), the bill’s author, urged his Republican colleagues to vote down the amendments because he says they would change the intent of the bill. Zaun says traffic cameras violate the Sixth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution.

Iowa General Assembly

On a vote of 30 to 20, the Iowa Senate passed a bill to allow longer bus rides for schoolchildren in large rural districts struggling with transportation costs.  

Under the bill, both elementary and secondary students could ride up to 75 minutes one way. 

Longer bus rides would be allowed if public hearings are held and parents are notified 30 days before a route is changed.

Currently, younger children’s rides are limited to 60 minutes.

Amy Mayer / IPR file photo

Iowa’s senior senator says shouldering most of the cost of President Trump’s infrastructure plan will be challenging for states. But, Republican Chuck Grassley says crumbling bridges and unreliable locks and dams are an impediment to Iowa’s economy.

“Being able to move agriculture goods out of the Midwest and into the world market is critical to our competitiveness in the coming decades,” Grassley says. “To do that, we need to ensure that we have adequate river, rail and highway infrastructure to move billions of bushels of grain.”

Kristofor Husted / file: Harvest Public Media

President Donald Trump delivers his State of the Union Address Tuesday and the nation’s roads, bridges, rails and rivers will be on many people’s minds in the Midwest.

Trump has said he’s committed to improving the country’s infrastructure and now Mike Steenhoek, director of the Soy Transportation Coalition in Ankeny, wants to hear some specifics. Steenhoek says it’s an issue that cuts across many industries and speaks to people in all corners of the country.

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