"Downtown Cedar Rapids has One Way Streets."  It's a statement that scares many drivers, and confuses many more.  Watching from our 4th floor perch, we know. It makes it pretty easy to spot "out of town" or new drivers, who aren't so sure what streets they can and can't turn on. Soon, drivers might not have to be so worried, thanks to a resolution passed at last night's city council meeting. 



When I moved here over 3 years ago, I was a bit apprehensive getting around at first, as there are quite a few one-way roads downtown.  My wife still doesn't like driving downtown because of them.  Many of her friends agree with her. Lately, it's started to get a bit more confusing as some roads have been opened up to both directions as the GTC has reopened.  And the confusion isn't just which roads are one ways, it's also which roads aren't.  Over the next 5 years though, a lot of that will be changing with many downtown roads will be converting to two-way streets.

There's no specific timeline being mentioned at this time, but the roads in question have been divided into 3 groups.  The first of these will see the conversion of:

  • 2nd Ave from 6th St SW to 7th St. SE,
  • 3rd Ave from 6th St. SW to 10th St. SE,
  • continuing the 4th Ave. conversion to extend to 19th St. SE,
  • 7th and 8th St. SE from 4th Ave. SE to 12th Ave SE.

(These final two roads would remain one-way from 4th Ave to I-380 to accommodate traffic flow from the on/off ramps.)

This would leave 5th Ave as the only downtown route with a one way.  However, that will change in Priority 2, converting the road to two-way from 3rd St SE to 19th St. SE to match it with the 4th Ave. changes. Priority 3 will see conversions for the rest of 2nd and 3rd Ave through Wellington Heights, all the way to 19th. St, and also from 6th St SW to 13th St. SW.

The overall plan is scheduled to take course over the next 5 years, and will also see many stoplights converted to stop signs, as well as the addition of on-street bikeways, as we've already started to see around town.  So don't get too excited yet, as it won't be happening immediately, but will be coming soon.

Are you excited or concerned about these changes?

City of Cedar Rapids