About Us

About Us


The Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission is a regional organization serving 52 cities in Northeast Iowa. We provide support through regional cooperation and collaboration between local governments, nonprofits and community members. We are an essential portal for planning and economic development expertise. We provide resources to support housing, workforce development, business development, community planning, and transportation. We do this by connecting community members to resources.

Upper Explorerland Regional Planning Commission (UERPC) was formally established in November of 1972.  UERPC was created to promote regional cooperation and meet the planning and economic development needs of local governments in the five NE Iowa counties of Allamakee, Clayton, Fayette, Howard and Winneshiek.

  • Providing technical assistance, information resources, and administrative services for local infrastructure projects and community facility projects to make communities a better place to live
  • Assisting with grants, providing loans and local financing tools to develop and preserve quality, affordable housing
  • Serving as the Economic Development District for the Region to stimulate economic growth through comprehensive loan programs, assisting with business plans, and financial packaging structured to meet the size and needs of individual businesses
  • Providing an extensive on-going cooperative planning effort to improve transportation needs of the area and assisting with regional transit planning to promote transit programs that further the development of the state's public transportation systems
  • Providing training and support assistance to low-income individuals, dislocated workers, and youth through classroom, pre-employment and on-the-job training programs
  • Providing assistance to low-income families with decent, safe, and sanitary housing in the private rental market
  • Facilitating access to employment and services for Iowa job seekers with disabilities
  • Providing technical assistance on land use planning, zoning, sub-division regulations, and local government financing
  • Providing assistance in updating city ordinances and conducting requested needs assessments to determine local housing demand
  • Providing information on historic preservation, recreation planning, downtown revitalization, and urban renewal special taxation districts.

The work accomplished by this Agency is spoken of highly by city council members, community leaders, home and business owners, and others who have received their assistance and benefited greatly from it.

For more information or a tour of the facilities, feel free to contact us at (563)-382-6171 or at (563)-864-7551.

News Headlines

The FruitGuys Community Fund

Posted: Tue, December 16, 2014

The FruitGuys Community Fund offers funding to support sustainability projects for small to mid-size farms. A primary goal of the fund is to help farms and orchards operate more sustainably and to promote advocacy that, over the long term, creates a more sustainable food system and healthier planet. Applications must be received by February 16, 2015.

... [ Read More ]

Iowa Safe Routees to School Annual Meeting

Posted: Mon, December 8, 2014

The Iowa Safe Routes to School meeting will take place on January 24, 2014 from 8:30-10:00 at the Iowa Events Center in Des Moines. We will have two guest speakers and the theme of our meeting will focus on the best practices for building walking school bus programs.

Our first speakers, Pam Hoogerwerf, Director for Community Outreach and Injury Prevention University of Iowa Children’s Hospital and Dr. Cara Hamann, a postdoc and injury epidemiologist for the Injury Prevention Research Center at the University of Iowa College of Public Health. Pam and Dr. Hamann will discuss their upcoming project, Pedal PORTAL pilot, a naturalistic bicycling study conducted in Iowa that utilized GPS-enabled helmet cameras to capture the bicycling experience of children and adults. Results presented will include descriptions of typical riding patterns, differences between adults and children, and rates of errors, near crashes, and crashes.

Ashley Christensen serves as the Regional Safe Routes to School Coordinator for Northeast Iowa and is dedicated to increasing physical activity levels among youth by enabling and encouraging students to safely walk and bicycle to and from school and in daily life. Ashley will review her guide on 10 Steps to Creating a Rural, Regional Safe Routes to School Program.

During the last part of our meeting we will be discussing Walking School Buses: Best Practices. We hope to have Walking School Bus Coordinators from around the state come to share their best practices. This is a great networking opportunity for individuals and communities to share their stories with successes and hurdles. Come sit with us and let's compare our notes on our sustainable Walking School Bus Programs.

Let’s explore our mutual mission by expanding the importance of Safe Routes to School. This meeting is a fantastic opportunity to network while growing lasting partnerships and to change the state of Iowa one safe route at a time.

For more information on the Iowa Safe Routes to School program and to register for this free meeting, please visit http://iowasaferoutes.org/ or contact Alana Croco (alana@iowabicyclecoalition.org).

... [ Read More ]

Let the Bike Rack Challenge Begin!

Posted: Fri, November 21, 2014

Thanks to generous support from the Allamakee County Community Foundation (ACCF) and the Depot Outlet, the 2015 Bike Rack Challenge will again take place this coming spring!

The Bike Rack Challenge, a project organized by UERPC’s Northeast Iowa Safe Routes to School Program and the Northeast Iowa Food and Fitness Initiative, encourages biking to school and other community destinations through youth creativity, skill and leadership. Bike racks ultimately benefit the health of individuals, communities and the environment by providing a secure bike parking location, which helps people get around better by bike.

Each spring, high school industrial technology classes are challenged to construct a usable bike rack for their school or other community location using as much recycled material as possible. Classes have from January until May to design and construct their bike rack.

Again, many thanks to the ACCF and the Depot Outlet for supporting this fun, challenging and rewarding project for students and for supporting community wellness and community betterment for years to come!

Northeast Iowa schools can still sign up for the Bike Rack Challenge! Click below to learn more or contact Ashley Christensen:  563-382-6171 or achristensen@uerpc.org.

... [ Read More ]

UERPC November Newsletter

Posted: Mon, November 17, 2014

Some of the headlines you can read about this month:

  • Iowa DOT Switches Into Winter Mode
  • Employee Spotlight-Michaela Collins
  • USDA Invests in Small and Emerging Rural Businesses and Rural Transportation
  • IowaWorks-Did you Know?
  • Legislative Event
  • Eating Healthy While Managing Holiday Stress
  • UERPC Spreads Its Wings
... [ Read More ]
[ View All News ]