A delegation from southwest Iowa spoke to the Iowa Transportation Commission today asking the commission to consider building a Highway 30 bypass around the south edge of Missouri Valley. John McCurdy of the Southwest Iowa Planning Council in Atlantic, told the commission the time is right to move ahead.

McCurdy says the D.O.T. studied the issue in the 1990’s and it was put on the shelf. He says one of the reasons it didn’t move forward is that there wasn’t the local support needed. Missouri Valley Mayor, Clint Sargent, says the biggest reason to move ahead with the bypass now is that the support has changed in favor of the bypass.

Sargent says they would like to combine the building of the bypass with FEMA flood mitigation measures to improve the flood protection in the area. Sargent says they know the importance of Highway 30 as a “corridor for commerce,” and he says the was evidenced by the efforts of the D.O.T. to keep it open during the flooding this year.

Sargent says there’s also a safety issue as the amount of truck traffic through the town on Highway 30 has increased. He says the businesses that rely on the truck traffic have already moved to the nearby interstate and those in Missouri Valley are not dependent on that traffic, so they support a bypass.

Sargent finished his remarks with a call for action on the issue. Sargent said as the mayor and on behalf of the business leaders and citizens, he officially asked the commission to consider the bypass south of Missouri Valley, just north of the Boyer River with FEMA-certified flood plans built in.

The southwest Iowa representatives made their comments at a public input session during the commission’s meeting in Council Bluffs. The commission was not scheduled to take any action on the comments from the hearing.