Recent applications of model-based iterative reconstruction (MBIR) algorithms to multislice helical CT reconstructions have shown that MBIR can greatly improve image quality by increasing resolution as well as reducing noise and some artifacts. However, high computational cost and long reconstruction times remain as a barrier to the use of MBIR in practical applications. Among the various iterative methods that have been studied for MBIR, iterative coordinate descent (ICD) has been found to have relatively low overall computational requirements due to its fast convergence. This paper presents a fast model-based iterative reconstruction algorithm using spatially nonhomogeneous ICD (NH-ICD) optimization. The NH-ICD algorithm speeds up convergence by focusing computation where it is most needed. The NH-ICD algorithm has a mechanism that adaptively selects voxels for update. First, a voxel selection criterion VSC determines the voxels in greatest need of update. Then a voxel selection algorithm VSA selects the order of successive voxel updates based upon the need for repeated updates of some locations, while retaining characteristics for global convergence. In order to speed up each voxel update, we also propose a fast 1-D optimization algorithm that uses a quadratic substitute function to upper bound the local 1-D objective function, so that a closed form solution can be obtained rather than using a computationally expensive line search algorithm. We examine the performance of the proposed algorithm using several clinical data sets of various anatomy. The experimental results show that the proposed method accelerates the reconstructions by roughly a factor of three on average for typical 3-D multislice geometries.