Cedar Rapids is a city in Eastern Iowa. In 2000, it was the second largest city in Iowa by population and is home to approximately 126,000 residents. Largely known as an industrial, working class city, Cedar Rapids has recently begun to grow and expand employment opportunities in the service sector, attracting new residents to the area. While out of the way of most major travel routes and destinations, a stop in Cedar Rapids may uncover a great taste of the Midwest. Typical Iowa hospitality is not lost here.
Cedar Rapids is served by Burlington Trailways.
Cedar Rapids is on I-380, about 20 minutes north of I-80.
The Eastern Iowa Airport (IATA: CID) , approximately 8 miles south of downtown, is served by five airlines.
All addresses in the city are based upon a quadrant system. The system divides the city into four directional quadrants with addresses that may look something like this:
500 33rd Ave SW
The quadrant system's base is the insection of the Cedar River and 1st Avenue. Although seemingly simple to an observer, this system is nearly useless to visitors since the intersecting lines essentially form an "X" on a map rather than a "+".
Also, visitors should note that along I-380 (North/South interstate corridor) and the surrounding downtown area, traffic cameras are utilized to enforce speed and red-light laws. The Cedar Rapids Police Department (CRPD) has suggested that no additional cameras will be placed, although this hasn't been confirmed by any other agency. The photo-enforcement begins at various speeds over the posted limit, but you generally will not be cited for speeds between 1 and 8 over the limit on the interstate. Lower tolerance is used on city streets, and fairly strict enforcement applies to red-light violations.
Driving in Cedar Rapids can be a hassle compared to cities of similar size. First, major thoroughfares (1st Avenue, Collins Rd., Blairs Ferry Rd., and Edgewood Road) have traffic lighting patterns that are inefficient. You will likely feel as if you're "catching every light." Although this is true in many cities, Cedar Rapidians agree that it is decidedly worse here. Additionally, the roads are insufficient for the volume of traffic during peak travel hours. This means that the city becomes a rolling traffic snarl for an hour around high-traffic areas (Lindale Mall), and the traffic backup rivals that of larger cities.
If you happen to travel in the adjacent city of Marion, be aware of the posted speed limit. Rumors of excessive enforcement are exaggerated—but only slightly! The speed limit inconspicuously drops to 20 mph on major roads, and the Marion Police Department is all too happy to cite unfamiliar vehicles.
Cedar Rapids Transit (319) 286-5573. Service runs from 5:20 AM until 7:00 PM Monday - Friday and 8:25 AM to 5:00 PM on Saturday. There is no service on Sunday.
- Cedar Rapids Downtown District.
- Cedar Rapids History Center.
- Cedar Rapids Museum of Art, 410 Third Ave SE, ☎ +1 319 366-7503. Features collection of works by Iowa natives Grant Wood and Marvin Cone, along with a collection of 21 Roman portrait busts.
- Cedar Rapids Science Station, 4444 1st Ave NE, Suite 410B (Lower Level of Lindale Mall), ☎ +1 319 363-7836. Science museum. Great for kids.
- Cedar Rapids Kernels, 950 Rockford Road SW, Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52404. Class A minor league baseball team in Cedar Rapids. $8-$11.
- Cedar Valley Nature Trail. Great paved trail for bicycling, running, etc. Winds around the Cedar River, beautiful farm fields and wooded areas.
- Indian Creek Nature Center. Stop in the barn museum to learn about Iowa's plants and wildlife, then check out any of their several miles of nature trails to see it in person!
- Orchestra Iowa.
- Theatre Cedar Rapids.
- Lindale Mall, 4444 1st Ave SE, ☎ +1 319 378-1380. Lindale Mall is anchored by Sears, Von Maur, and Younkers, with numerous other chain stores and local retailers. Food court has not only chain restaurants, but Cedar Rapids based options as well.
- Beef O'Brady's, 5240 Edgewood Rd NE, ☎ +1 319 294-4992. 11AM-11PM. A family type sports pub. Specializes in chicken wings (12 different sauces) and burgers. $6-12.
- Brewed Awakenings, 1271 1st Ave SE, ☎ +1 319 363-4333. Coffee shop near Coe College that makes excellent espresso.
- The Flying Wienie, 103 8th Ave SW, ☎ +1 319 861-3036. The roof is adorned with a full sized, bright yellow bi-plane. Serves hot dogs and other greasy short order food, homemade Polish sausage and Gyros.
- The Starlite Room, 3300 1st Ave NE. Small town Iowa atmosphere with greasy food. Known for its half pound Superburger.
- The Vault (formally The Piano Lounge), 208 2nd Ave SE, ☎ +1 319-363-0606. Known for its large martini menu and music, dueling pianos every weekend, and also featuring comedy acts. Half-price martinis from 3-7PM everyday, and all day Tuesdays & Thursdays. Closed Sundays.
- R.G. Books, 3611 1st Ave NE, ☎ +1 319 363-7550. Small, cozy, intimate place with a variety of drinks. Books line the walls. Bartenders have unique personalities.
- Third Base Sports, 500 Blairs Ferry Rd NE, ☎ +1 319 378-9090. Great hand crafted ales, including five year round beers and three rotating seasonal tap handles. Diverse food menu, tons of TVs, party room, patio.
- Zins taste, 227 2nd Ave S.E, ☎ +1 319 363-9467. M-Th 11AM-10PM; F 11AM-12AM; Sa 5PM-12AM. Tapas - Anything from Sliders to seared scallops served as a tapas portion. $$.
- Fairfield Inn & Suites Cedar Rapids Hotel, 605 32nd Ave SW (Cedar Rapids, IA-52404), ☎ +1 319-247-1000. Located airport free breakfast
- Howard Johnson, 616 33rd Ave SW (5 blocks W of I-380), ☎ +1 319 366-2475. Check-in: 3PM, check-out: Noon. Continental breakfast, free wi-fi, in-room appliances
|Routes through Cedar Rapids|
|END ← Waterloo ←||N S||→ Iowa City → END|
|Ames ← Marshalltown ← Jct ←||W E||→ Mount Vernon → Rock Falls|
|Ends at W E ← Amana Colonies ←||SW NE||→ Anamosa → Dubuque|
|Austin ← Waterloo ←||N S||→ Iowa City → Keokuk|