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Downtown DSM: Future Forward Initial Summary Reception

May 17, 2022

GREATER DES MOINES, IA (May 17, 2022) – After a multi-month planning effort and a robust and inclusive community engagement process for the Downtown DSM: Future Forward Vision Plan and Action Plan, the plan’s leaders have compiled an initial summary of recommendations for public review and input. The initial summary reception will take place on Wednesday, May 25 from 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. on the Skywalk level on the south side of the Wellmark YMCA building in Downtown Des Moines (DSM).

The Greater Des Moines Partnership, in collaboration with Bravo Greater Des Moines, Catch Des Moines, City of Des Moines, Des Moines Regional Transit Authority (DART), Des Moines Downtown Chamber of Commerce, Des Moines Area Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), FuseDSM, Operation Downtown and Polk County, have worked to develop the Downtown DSM: Future Forward Vision Plan and Action Plan, a community-driven effort to help position Downtown DSM for short-term economic recovery and long-term economic vitality and vibrancy.

At the reception, participants are welcome to stop by throughout the day to see the plan for the future in a series of Vision Boards. The design team, led by Bâton Global, Civitas Consultants and RDG Planning & Design, will share the community-driven ideas with attendees and ask for feedback on the final draft recommendations.  

The growth of the Downtown DSM population, amenities and overall vibrancy has mirrored the growth of the region in the last 20 years, and this vision plan will create a roadmap for the next chapter. It also helps the region build upon the excitement that already exists in Downtown DSM through events, attractions, major projects, major employers and more. 

The Future Forward Steering Committee is chaired by Jake Christensen, President of Christensen Development and Co-Chair of The Partnership’s Downtown DSM Board; Angela Connolly, Chair of the Polk County Board of Supervisors and Quad Chair of Capital Crossroads regional vision plan; Mayor Frank Cownie, City of Des Moines; and Kathryn Kunert, Vice President of Economic Connections and Integration at MidAmerican Energy Company. The Future Forward Council Leaders and Liaisons are Teree Caldwell-Johnson, President and CEO of Oakridge Neighborhood and Quad Chair of Capital Crossroads; Jen Carruthers, President of Capital City Pride; and Mary Sellers, President of United Way of Central Iowa. See the full list of Future Forward Steering Committee and Future Forward Council members here.

Downtown DSM: Future Forward will also roll up into the Capital Crossroads regional vision plan, which will be updated later in 2022. As part of the process, the plan's leaders and consultants have actively engaged with the public to garner feedback and ideas for the future of Downtown DSM — with an estimated 7,000+ individuals involved in past events or online feedback — as well as engaging a Future Forward Council that represents community and non-profit leaders from Central Iowa. 

For more information, visit the Downtown Vision Plan and Action Plan website. Members of the media should contact Courtney Shaw at cshaw@DSMpartnership.com.

About the Greater Des Moines Partnership

The Greater Des Moines Partnership is the economic and community development organization that serves Greater Des Moines (DSM), Iowa. Together with 24 Affiliate Chambers of Commerce, more than 6,500 Regional Business Members and more than 365 Investors, The Partnership drives economic growth with one voice, one mission and as one region. Through innovation, strategic planning and global collaboration, The Partnership grows opportunity, helps create jobs and promotes DSM as the best place to build a business, a career and a future. Learn more at DSMpartnership.com.

About Downtown, DSM, Inc.

Downtown DSM, Inc. is part of the Greater Des Moines Partnership and is dedicated to ensuring the continued growth of Downtown Des Moines (DSM). A strong region needs a strong Downtown. Downtown DSM, Inc. leads efforts to drive development, placemaking and events in Downtown DSM. It promotes a strong Downtown through integration of retail, restaurants, businesses, housing, events and placemaking.