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  • Andy Davis
  • Thu June 02 2016
  • Posted Jun 2, 2016
Biking around Iowa City could become even easier over the course of the next few years.

The Iowa City Council through its strategic plan has its sights set on achieving agold-level designation by next year from theLeague of American Bicyclists, an organization that each year evaluates and grades communities in all 50 states with a bicycle-friendly assessment. The city and University of Iowa currently hold silver designations, the highest rankings in the state.

With the help of so-called "road diets" and a proposed downtown bicycle "parklet," the city is working toward accomplishing that goal.

During a work session last month the City Council reviewed plans and heard staff recommendations on five possible road diets, atransportation planning technique that includes streetlane reduction or reconfiguration intended to improve movement and safety onroadways.

Kent Ralston, executive director for the Metropolitan Planning Organization of Johnson County, said the council supported projects on Clinton and Madison streets that would bring the roads from four lanes to three.

The conversions wouldcreate two through lanes, a shared center turn lane and painted bike lanes. Ralston said the road diets would be coupled with intersection reconstructions at Clinton and Burlington streets and Madison and Burlington streets. Clinton street would be converted between Burlington and Jefferson streets. Madison Street would be converted between Burlington and Market streets.

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