North Iowa
Corridor Plan

City of Mason City, Iowa
Mason City, IA

The North Iowa Corridor Joint Comprehensive Plan came together from a collaborative effort between the City of Clear Lake, the City of Mason City, Cerro Gordo County, and the North Iowa Corridor Economic Development Corporation. This plan, considered a pioneering project in the State of Iowa because of its spirit of collaboration rather than competition between jurisdictions, presents a framework between urban and rural areas. 

Planning for a unified future is not new to the jurisdictions in the North Iowa Corridor. Many of the ideas from the Vision North Iowa Strategic Plan are reflected in this document. Leaders of these organizations recognize that building momentum together on a common vision is better than working separately. What's good for one is good for the others. Thus, the joint comprehensive planning effort came to fruition in 2023 and completed in 2024.   

Mason City (population 29,000), experiences a relatively stable population. In addition to industrial and commercial growth, key issues addressed by the plan included expansion of the park system, continued revitalization of older neighborhoods (and downtown), and reinforcing positive community character through housing and identity. 

Clear Lake (population 8,000), experiences a "snowbird" phenomenon wherein much of the population migrates south for the winter. The community's principal strategy is creating a year-round economy that complements Mason City.   

Together, Clear Lake and Mason City, represent best practices in planning in the country, having implemented many of their previous plan's recommendations, which RDG has authored over the last 20 years.