Lincoln Highway buffs seeking input

Staff report
The future of the Lincoln Highway in Iowa could begin in Greene County — again.

Greene County, after all, was the first county in Iowa to pave its portion of the nation’s first coast-to-coast highway, which is now more than a century old and seen as a ripe opportunity to foster history-minded tourism.

The Lincoln Highway Heritage Byway will hold the first of several area public meetings at 6:30 p.m. Feb. 17 at the Greene County Historical Society Museum, 219 E. Lincoln Way, to introduce a new initiative — the creation of a Corridor Management Plan, or a long-term plan for the entire byway.

The byway — Iowa’s longest — stretches from Clinton to Council Bluffs.

Residents, elected officials, business owners and anyone interested in the future of the Lincoln Highway are invited to attend. The meeting will focus on the highway in Greene County.

Similar meetings in Boone and Carroll counties will be held later in the year.

“This plan will allow us to learn about the assets and opportunities along the Lincoln Highway in all of its communities in Iowa,” said John Mazzello, Corridor Management Plan project coordinator.

The plan will be unveiled next year.

The Lincoln Highway Heritage Byway is one of 11 byways in the Iowa Department of Transportation’s Iowa Byways program.

The Corridor Management Plan will develop plans for bringing more travelers to Lincoln Highway towns. A plan also is necessary to achieve national recognition for the byway.

“Greene County is a very significant location for the Lincoln Highway Heritage Byway,” according to Jan Gammon, byway program coordinator.  “The interest in the Lincoln Highway here is extremely high and communities have done so much to preserve and promote its heritage.

“Now we are looking forward to hearing from community members about what might be the next steps along this historic road.”

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