Recent News

Survey: Where do you want to purchase a home in Des Moines?

As Des Moines pops up on “best of” lists, the City of Des Moines wants to ensure that our neighborhoods within the city are the best places for residents to live, work and play. Understanding the style of homes, the amenities that are important to potential home buyers and other quality of life information is critical when looking towards future development of the city. This survey is designed primarily for renters who are living in the city of Des Moines who hope to purchase someday. If you have any questions, please contact Emily Boyd at or 515-262-5965. Take the Survey

Thin details of scaled-back convention center hotel go before IEDA today

Reported in the Business Record – 1/16/15

The Iowa Economic Development Authority will receive an update today on scaled-back plans for a convention center hotel in Des Moines. The review comes at a time when leaders from the public and private sectors are attempting to fill a funding gap of about $6 million in what now is a roughly $90 million project to build a 300-room, four-star hotel at the former Allied Insurance Co. site just south of the Iowa Events Center. Original plans called for a 450-room hotel at a total project cost of $128 million. A team of officials from the public and private sectors is hoping to fill the funding gap from the private sector. According to an IEDA staff report, the hotel would be operated by a nonprofit organization. Polk County acquired the deed to the property after it was first purchased by the Des Moines Redevelopment Co., a group of businesses and business leaders that has been behind efforts in recent years to trigger downtown development. The city of Des Moines has received preliminary approval from the state for a Reinvestment District that stretches from the proposed convention center hotel site south to Court Avenue. That includes the redevelopment of the Randolph Hotel and the development of a Hy-Vee Inc. grocery store and 81-unit apartment building, with both projects facing each other at Fourth Street and Court Avenue. The area could receive $36 million in sales tax rebates. By midsummer, some city leaders were not certain that financing could be secured for the convention center hotel because of the challenges similar projects have faced in turning a profit. That mood has lightened, however, in recent weeks, and officials are expressing optimism that a package can be put together. A final proposal could be submitted Feb. 23 to the Des Moines City Council. The Polk County Board of Supervisors also will review the plan. Under the state program, detailed financial terms must be presented to the IEDA by the end of February before the Reinvestment District receives final state approval. The IEDA board also will receive updates on projects in Muscatine and Waterloo that have received preliminary approval. To date, Waterloo is the only community to submit a completed plan.

ISU Economist: Des Moines’ growth outpaces rest of state

Reported in the Business Record – 12/23/14

Iowa State University economist Peter Orazem reports that the number of nonfarm jobs has grown 5.9 percent in the Des Moines area since 2007, compared with Iowa’s 1.5 percent growth and the country’s 1.2 percent pace, The Des Moines Register reported. “The key sectors in Des Moines didn’t lose much in this recession compared to the nation, unless you look at information (industry). … The rest of Des Moines came out well,” Orazem said. Information job losses were nearly 30 percent in the Des Moines metro area since 2007, compared with about 11 percent nationally.

2014 Annual Event Award Nominations are Now Open

Annual Event


2014 Business of the Year

2014 Citizen of the Year

Most Likely to Refer the Downtown Chamber

Best Downtown Council Host

Best Business After Hours Host

Best Ribbon Cutting Event

Open Category



Seventh Street to Reopen in Downtown Des Moines

Reported in the Des Moines Register – 12/16/14

Good news for downtown commuters: Seventh Street will reopen between Walnut and Locust streets Thursday night, according to city officials.

The street has been closed since March, when a massive  fire destroyed half of the former Younkers building at the corner of Seventh and Walnut streets.

Walnut Street between Seventh and Eighth streets will remain closed for at least 12 to 18 months, said city traffic engineer Jennifer McCoy. It was also closed because of the fire, but will remain barricaded longer because of work to renovate the remaining half of the Younkers building into apartments and the construction of a new four-story building by EMC Insurance Cos.