About the research
Today, many of Iowa’s counties are experiencing an increase in rural development. Two specific types of development were focused on for this research: rural residential subdivisions and livestock production operations. Rural residential developments are primarily year-round single-family homes, though some are vacation homes. Livestock production in Iowa includes hog, beef, and poultry facilities. These two types of rural development, while obviously very different in nature and incompatible with each other, share one important characteristic: They each generate substantial amounts of new traffic for Iowa’s extensive secondary road system.
This research brings together economic, spatial, and legal analysis methods to address the impacts of rural development on the secondary road system and provide county engineers, county supervisors, and state legislators with guidance in addressing the challenges associated with this development.