Completion in a year
Extensions of 4-lane Highway 20 across northwest Iowa and into Illinois and Nebraska are vital to the importance of the route to serve business, industry and agriculture in the three state areas including Iowa, project proponents believe.
Highway 20 will be four lane from Fort Dodge to Dubuque a year from now with the completion of the bridge over the Iowa River and paving poured thru Hardin and Grundy counties.
The Highway #20 Corridor Association reviewed progress of the system at its regular June meeting at the Sioux City Convention Center including a three-hour afternoon retreat to plan future plans and strategies of the association.
The importance of the wider expressway was noted in the growth of economic and demographic developments along the new Avenue of the Saints from St. Louis, MO to St. Paul, MN. Most of the small towns in Iowa along that route have gained population and new business. Towns along the future No. 20 have developed new industrial parks and have enticed new industry.
At the morning business meeting officers and board members were re-elected. Included were Floyd Magnusson, Ft. Dodge, chairman; Shirley Phillips, Sac City, vice chair; Sharon Irwin, Early, secretary-treasurer; board members Lorna Burnside and John B. Anderson, Storm Lake; Mary Lou Gunderson, Eldora; Jim Kruse and Greg Nashleanos, Sioux City; Bob Bocken, Ft. Dodge; and new member Ed Leahy, Sac City. Also attending the meeting from Storm Lake were Senator. Mary Lou Freeman and County Supervisor Herb Crampton.
Progress continues on the highway network that will influence economic development in the north one-third of Iowa. Paving of the deck on the new mile long bridge near Steamboat Rock over the Iowa River will begin soon . In Illinois the bypass of Galena is in Phase 2 of design and acquisition after the route was determined but construction still awaits funding by the state of Illinois. It will cost about $200 million to complete. A bypass of Freeport needs additional funding.
Lowell Johnson, city administrator at Wayne, NE, reported they are awaiting a corridor study from South Sioux City through Norfolk on to Highway 81 south to Columbus and connecting to I-80.
Nearing completion is 4-lane No. 151 from Dubuque to the Wisconsin cities of Madison and Milwaukee.
Of special interest of the Corridor Association is work and plans for #20 from Moorland to Moville. Design work is underway in Calhoun County. A new intersection is planned to serve the ethanol plant south of Galva and a satellite industry.
In Sac County 578A northwest of Early may be condemned by the Dept. of Transportation as a "wetland area" as a tradeoff for wetland that may be crossed by the new #20 in other areas. Termed a "pilot project," the county would lose about $9,000 per year in property taxes.
Members were urged to attend an information meeting by the Iowa DOT on Thursday, July 11 from 5 to 7 p.m. at Early city hall.
ON THE WEB - Information is also available on the internet at www.Hiway 20. org.