Urban Velo

Iowa Bike Ban

If some people have their way, cyclists in Iowa will have fewer places to ride. Pete from Iowa writes:

Okay, so maybe the rest of the Urban Velo community doesn’t consider Iowa exactly ‘urban,’ BUT a few haters in our corn-fed state are trying their damnedest to ban bikes, geared or fixed or otherwise, from the roads.

According to the No Shared Farm-to-Market Roadways in Iowa petition:

We the undersigned are Iowa residents who urge our Legislature to support a ballot initiative for the November 2010 election which will prohibit bicyclists from using state and county defined farm-to-market roads.

A farm-to-market road is a state or county road which serves to connect rural or agricultural areas to market towns.

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  1. spiderleggreenAugust 3, 2009 at 9:00 am

    I think it’s great that even in Iowa bikes are making their presense known. But to keep it growing, they’ll have push back against efforts like this. Perhaps respond to this “don’t get in the way of our corn” argument by making the argument that public roads should be for everybody and if we can’t use these roads, reasonable alternatives should be created.

  2. Greg SmithAugust 3, 2009 at 9:27 am

    Iowa has been a great state to ride bikes in for years! In the late ’80s and early ’90s I was a rep for a bicycle parts wholesaler covering most of the state and had numerous excellent rides with some very avid cyclists. My favorite town in Iowa, Decorah, is very bike friendly and, with great MTB trails and road loops a super place to ride.

    I was just in Iowa for 3 days and about 120 miles of riding. Most of our route was on roads that would not be covered by the ridiculous ban being proposed but there were several sections where we needed to transition on more heavily trafficked routes for a couple of miles that would and the ability to use them was essential to our ride. Please, if you live in Iowa, fight this with all you energy!

  3. velo1August 3, 2009 at 10:01 am

    This is just a bunch of farmers that are grumpy about having to slow down and pass cyclists out enjoying a ride in the country. It’s still a bad idea and sets a bad precedence for other states.

    As to Spiderleg’s post:

    “I think it’s great that even in Iowa bikes are making their presense known.” You should come out next July for RAGBRAI. It’s the largest and longest running cycling event in the world.

  4. TerryAugust 3, 2009 at 11:18 am

    Maybe push a bill that would keep those tractors and farm equipment off the roads and slowing everyone down…

  5. spiderleggreenAugust 3, 2009 at 12:35 pm

    I didn’t even go into how Iowa monoculture food is destroying the country’s health. Hardly any farmers left to complain, because of our crazy food system.

  6. antbikemikeAugust 3, 2009 at 2:47 pm

    Corn fed, inbread, brain dead ;) Kidding aside, this would a very bad law to pass. I had a great time and met a lot of very nice people riding across Iowa [in 1989]…In fact the best state of all of the ones I rode accross in the USA…however I guess times change.
    A law just like this was almost passed in Texas [only in a few counties] several years back, but it was stopped by the TBC {Texas Bike Coalition] and in the end only made the TBC more active.

  7. Billy BobAugust 3, 2009 at 6:11 pm

    Add another reason as to why the rest of the world thinks the USA is full of rednecks.

  8. 2whls3spdsAugust 3, 2009 at 6:18 pm

    I don’t think it is even the farmers complaining. I think it is a bunch of small town zealots that don’t like having to share their roads with anyone else. They have no clue who pays for what. As a taxpayer that seldom drives the vehicle I own (prefer to ride a bike) I don’t think I should have to subsidize their cheap ethanol laced gas any more.


  9. Rochester Flyers » Blog Archive » Iowa bike ban vs. car banAugust 4, 2009 at 10:46 am

    [...] Looks like Urban Velo is getting in on this. [...]

  10. steevoAugust 5, 2009 at 10:14 am

    So weird. When I bicycled across Iowa, everybody was super friendly and supportive, it seemed like a great place. 99% of the people mentioned RAGBRAI.

  11. Michael FaasAugust 11, 2009 at 12:38 pm

    The Iowa Bicycle Coalition is collecting supporters for their petition, check it out.


    Hailing from Iowa I know what it’s like to get passed by a grain truck in a no passing zone with not another car in sight leaving only inches to spare. There’s a great cycling scene in Iowa from racers to baggers to urban single speed.

    Also most Iowans are incredibly friendly to people and bicyclists.

    Check out http://www.bikeiowa.com

  12. Hill BillyJuly 23, 2010 at 9:17 pm

    Ok, lets ban all them there farmers, all the trucks, now, tell me what are you are going to eat? Are you really that s—-d, tell me you know better. If not, then lets ban all the farmers, its only a 30 billion dollar income for Iowa.

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