Iowa offensive tackle Tristan Wirfs made his mark on Mount Vernon. Many in town made their mark on him, too. Wirfs and his mother, Sarah, took The Gazette on a tour of his hometown, revisiting scenes around what essentially is the one square mile where he grew up. This story is a little about what can hold you back. This is mostly about what moves you forward.


See what road upgrades are happening in the Corridor this spring

Projects in Marion, Hiawatha, Iowa City, Coralville, North Liberty

Drivers navigate the roundabout at the intersection of 7th Street at 7th Avenue in Marion on Friday, June 9, 2017. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)
Drivers navigate the roundabout at the intersection of 7th Street at 7th Avenue in Marion on Friday, June 9, 2017. (Liz Martin/The Gazette)

In addition to Paving for Progress in Cedar Rapids, many communities have street upgrades planned for the coming construction season. Here are some of the biggest projects in our communities:


• The extension of Tower Terrace Road from Winslow Road to Lennon Lane could be completed this year. Phase one of the project includes extending Tower Terrace Road, with phase two including the reconstruction and realignment of Winslow Road, including connections to Oak Savannah Court and Vaughn Drive.

• Work could begin this year on a mini roundabout at the intersection of 10th Avenue and 10th Street.

• Intersection improvements are planned for Highway 13 and Hennessey Parkway, including left turn lanes and traffic signals.

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CEDAR RAPIDS - With a roundabout on Ellis Boulevard NW, a new intersection on Mount Vernon Road SE and as many as 50 residential projects across the community, officials say this year's Paving for Progress season will be a busy one.

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• 14th Street is planned for reconstruction, including driveways, storm sewer and other work from 12th Avenue to Brockman Avenue.


• Reconstruction is planned for the intersection of Center Point Road and Willman Street. Traffic and cross walk signals will be installed and asphalt and concrete will be replaced.

• A new street and city utilities will be installed on the east side of Robins Road, connecting A Avenue to Robins Road.

• An overlay project will cover 12th Avenue from Lyndhurst Drive to Blairs Ferry Road. ADA sidewalk updates are included.

• Another overlay project would cover Center Point Road from E Clark Street to Blairs Ferry Road. The project has not yet received City Council approval.

Iowa City

• Overlay updates to Highway 6 from near Rocky Shore Drive to Sturgis Corner should be completed this year. In addition, improvements including a median and new traffic signals are planned for the intersection of Riverside Drive and Myrtle Avenue, to allow for safe pedestrian crossing.


• A pedestrian tunnel will be installed on the west side of Highway 1 under the railroad bridge near Riverside Court. When complete it will allow for safe pedestrian travel on the west side of the street.

• The second year of downtown reconstruction will cover the College Street portion of the Pedestrian Mall. Work will include installing a new brick surface, new planters and amenities.

• McCollister Boulevard will be extended from Gilbert Street to the Sycamore Street roundabout.

• Mormon Trek Boulevard will transition from four-lane travel to three lanes — one in each direction and dedicated center turn lane — between Westside Drive and Melrose.


• Work on First Avenue between 6th and 9th streets will include completing permanent northbound and southbound left turn lanes and medians at Sixth Street. Sidewalk and street paving north of Sixth Street also is planned. Railroad crossing signals and gates will be installed, along with a right turn lane onto E. Seventh St.

• Expanding Coral Ridge Avenue between Oakdale Boulevard and Forevergreen Road to four lanes of travel is planned for completion. Work will include final street, median and sidewalk construction on Coral Ridge Avenue from University Parkway to Forevergreen Road.

• E Seventh Street between First Avenue and E Second Avenue will be reconstructed, including the installation of a roundabout at E Seventh Street and E Second Avenue.

North Liberty

• New roundabouts will be constructed at the Penn Street and Front Street intersection and the future intersection at North Bend Drive and N Dubuque Street. Work is anticipated to be completed before classes start at the nearby Grant Elementary.

• Main Street improvements are planned for the block between N Dubuque and Cherry streets. Work will prepare the area for the future police station building and include sidewalks and sanitary and storm sewer updates.

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