Capital city Des Moines
Population 3,190,369 (2020)
Surface 145,743 km²
Governor Kim Reynolds (R)
Member of the US since 1846

Iowa is one of the fifty states of the United States. The state is located approximately in the center of the country. The abbreviation for Iowa is IA. Its nickname is ‘The Hawkeye State’. That means ‘falcon’s eye state’. A falcon is a bird. With 3,062,309 inhabitants, Iowa is the 29th most populous state in the US. Iowa borders the states of Minnesota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Missouri, Illinois, and Wisconsin. The capital of Iowa is Des Moines, which is French for: monks. That’s because Iowa (and a few other states) used to belong to France. In 1803 these French territories were sold to America.


There are several cities in Iowa. Here are the five largest.

Largest Cities in Iowa

Name Inhabitants County
1. Des Moines 206.599 Polk County
2. Cedar Rapids 127,905 Linn County
3. Davenport 100.802 Scott County
4. Sioux City 82,967 Woodbury County
5. Iowa City 68,947 Johnson County

How many counties in Iowa? The State of Iowa comprises 99 counties.

Adair County, Iowa
Adams County, Iowa
Allamakee County, Iowa
Appanoose County, Iowa
Audubon County, Iowa
Benton County, Iowa
Black Hawk County, Iowa
Boone County, Iowa
Bremer County, Iowa
Buchanan County, Iowa
Buena Vista County, Iowa
Butler County, Iowa
Calhoun County, Iowa
Carroll County, Iowa
Cass County, Iowa
Cedar County, Iowa
Cerro Gordo County, Iowa
Cherokee County, Iowa
Chickasaw County, Iowa
Clarke County, Iowa
Clay County, Iowa
Clayton County, Iowa
Clinton County, Iowa
Crawford County, Iowa
Dallas County, Iowa
Davis County, Iowa
Decatur County, Iowa
Delaware County, Iowa
Des Moines County, Iowa
Dickinson County, Iowa
Dubuque County, Iowa
Emmet County, Iowa
Fayette County, Iowa
Floyd County, Iowa
Franklin County, Iowa
Fremont County, Iowa
Greene County, Iowa
Grundy County, Iowa
Guthrie County, Iowa
Hamilton County, Iowa
Hancock County, Iowa
Hardin County, Iowa
Harrison County, Iowa
Henry County, Iowa
Howard County, Iowa
Humboldt County, Iowa
Ida County, Iowa
Iowa County, Iowa
Jackson County, Iowa
Jasper County, Iowa
Jefferson County, Iowa
Johnson County, Iowa
Jones County, Iowa
Keokuk County, Iowa
Kossuth County, Iowa
Lee County, Iowa
Linn County, Iowa
Louisa County, Iowa
Lucas County, Iowa
Lyon County, Iowa
Madison County, Iowa
Mahaska County, Iowa
Marion County, Iowa
Marshall County, Iowa
Mills County, Iowa
Mitchell County, Iowa
Monona County, Iowa
Monroe County, Iowa
Montgomery County, Iowa
Muscatine County, Iowa
O’Brien County, Iowa
Osceola County, Iowa
Page County, Iowa
Palo Alto County, Iowa
Plymouth County, Iowa
Pocahontas County, Iowa
Polk County, Iowa
Pottawattamie County, Iowa
Poweshiek County, Iowa
Ringgold County, Iowa
Sac County, Iowa
Scott County, Iowa
Shelby County, Iowa
Sioux County, Iowa
Story County, Iowa
Tama County, Iowa
Taylor County, Iowa
Union County, Iowa
Van Buren County, Iowa
Wapello County, Iowa
Warren County, Iowa
Washington County, Iowa
Wayne County, Iowa
Webster County, Iowa
Winnebago County, Iowa
Winneshiek County, Iowa
Woodbury County, Iowa
Worth County, Iowa
Wright County, Iowa

Interstate 129 in Iowa

Begin South Sioux City
End Sioux City
Length 3 mi
Length 5 km
1A South Sioux City1B South Sioux City

2 South Sioux City

Missouri River

1 → Omaha / Sioux Falls

Interstate 129 or I -129 is a short Interstate Highway in the U.S. states of Nebraska and Iowa. The freeway forms a short bypass of Sioux City, a regional city in northwest Iowa. I-129 is 5 kilometers long.

Travel directions

I-129 begins in Nebraska as a continuation of US 20 in Nebraska, at a cloverleaf junction with US 75. The highway has 2×2 lanes and runs east past South Sioux City. After a few miles, the bridge over the Missouri River, which also forms the border with the state of Iowa, follows. Immediately in Iowa, it interchanges with Interstate 29, then I-129 merges into US 20 in Iowa, which forms a freeway along the east side of Sioux City.


Although Iowa made great progress with the I-29 in the late 1950s, the first part of which was opened in Sioux City in 1958, the I-129 took a little longer. I-129 is actually a capstone of US 20. The highway was opened to traffic on November 22, 1976. Through traffic that follows the US 20 can thus avoid Sioux City.

Traffic intensities

22,000 vehicles use the bridge over the Missouri River on the Nebraska-Iowa border every day.

Interstate 235 in Iowa

Get started West Des Moines
End Des Moines
Length 14 mi
Length 22 km
  • 0 → Kansas City / Omaha1 West Des Moines
  • 2 22nd Street
  • 3 73rd Street
  • 4 63rd Street
  • 5 56th Street
  • 6 31st Street
  • 7 Des Moines International Airport
  • 8 Downtown Des Moines
  • 9 14th Street
  • 10 Easton Boulevard
  • 11 Guthrie Avenue
  • 12 Euclid Avenue
  • 13 → Minneapolis / Davenport

Interstate 235 or I -235 is an Interstate Highway in the U.S. state of Iowa. The freeway forms a route through downtown Des Moines, the capital of Iowa. I-235 begins and ends at an interchange with I-35/I-80. Interstate 235 is 22 kilometers long.

Travel directions

The 2008 modernized I-235.

The highway begins in the west of the metropolitan area at an interchange with I-35 and I-80. Interstate 35 enters here from Kansas City in the south, and merges with Interstate 80 coming from Omaha in the west. Both roads then have a double numbering along the north side of the city. I-235 runs 2×3 lanes east to downtown. The highway passes by the Des Moines business district, which has some high-rise buildings. It also crosses the River Des Moines. On the east side of downtown, I-235 turns north, then terminates again at I-35 and I-80. Interstate 35 heads north toward Minneapolis, and Interstate 80 runs east, toward cities like Cedar Rapids, Davenport, and Chicago.


I-235 was built fairly quickly during the 1960s. In 1961, the first section opened on the west side of downtown, which was extended in 1964 to cross the Des Moines River. In 1968, the highway joined I-35 and I-80 in the northeast of the city, and in 1969 the final link followed in west Des Moines.

In the period 2002-2008, I-235 through downtown Des Moines was modernized and widened.

Opening history

From Unpleasant Length Date
exit 6 Exit 7B 2 km 14-12-1961
Exit 7B Exit 8B 2 km 09-11-1963
Exit 8B Exit 10 3 km 13-12-1966
Exit 4 exit 6 3 km 06-12-1967
Exit 10 exit 13 5 km 06-12-1967
exit 0 Exit 4 6 km 30-10-1968

Traffic intensities

Interstate 235 is the busiest highway in Iowa.

Location 2014
Exit 0 (west) 74.900
Exit 1 Valley West Drive 94,400
Exit 2 22nd Street 112,900
Exit 3 8th Street 114,700
Exit 4 63rd Street 119,400
Exit 5B 42nd Street 121,900
Exit 6 31st Street 121.700
Exit 7 Martin Luther King Jr. parkway 107,300
Exit 8 Downtown Des Moines 83,700
Exit 9 6th Street 70,400
Exit 10A 41st Street 69,900
Exit 10B University Avenue 70,900
Exit 11 Guthrie Avenue 72.100
Exit 12 Euclid Avenue 67,000

Iowa - The Hawkeye State

Iowa – The Hawkeye State
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