Area code 319
Template:Iowa area codes image map Area code 319 is a telephone area code for southeastern and east-central Iowa. (The map to the right is clickable; click on any of the area codes on the map to go to the area code for that region).
Despite its relatively modest population, Iowa was assigned three area codes when the area code system was implemented in 1947, one for each third of the state. 319 covered the eastern third, and stretched along the entire border with Wisconsin and Illinois. By the end of the 20th century, it was felt that the 319 code was running out of available numbers due to the increase in mobile devices, lines for computer equipment, FAX machines, and other services. In late 2000 it was announced that a new 563 area code would be assigned to northeastern Iowa. Cell phone service providers hoped that it would be an overlay since it would not require reprogramming of cell phones.
However, overlays were still a relatively new concept at the time, and met with considerable resistance due to the requirements for 10-digit dialing and mixing of area codes within the same area. In the end, it was decided that a geographic split would be employed. As a result, the northeastern portion of the old 319 territory, including Bettendorf, Clinton, Davenport, Decorah, Dubuque and Eldridge, was shifted to the new 563 area code. The new code became operational in March 2001, and became mandatory in December 2001.