MASON CITY, Iowa - Iowa DOT may be making some changes to the rest area system across the state as part of their "Rest Ahead" program.
While the DOT is asking for public feedback regarding the state's 37 rest area system until September 2019, they are recommending closing 11 underutilized or aging rest areas and all parking areas in the state, including those on Interstate 35 in Cerro Gordo County north of Clear Lake, within a 15-30 year timeframe.
According to Iowa DOT, the federal government requires regular access to rest areas along interstates, but a growing system of alternatives such as 24-hour gas stations and truck stops has changed that.
The closures come as the agency is looking into how the state's rest areas can be more efficient while also looking to save about $30 million over two decades as part of the program.
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