East Village Master Plan

Des Moines, Iowa

In 2001, the City of Des Moines, Iowa, retained Development Strategies as part of a team to do a Master Plan and provide Redevelopment Guidelines for a district now known as East Village. While East Village surrounds the venerable state capitol building on the east side of the downtown, the bulk of downtown commerce is on the west side. 20 years later, the plan has been successfully implemented, with East Village being a revitalization success story, and the two “halves” of downtown better integrated.

Our Approach

The Plan provided a framework for revitalization of the east side of downtown Des Moines by, increasing the density of activity necessary to support a pedestrian friendly environment, and identifying new and converted places for store owners, artists, and residents to locate.

Development Strategies’ role was to advise on development opportunities for feasibility and market potential, provide an economic strategy, and create a framework to encourage private investment in ways that contribute to community goals and placemaking. Today, East Village is a popular and authentic urban destination for residents of Des Moines, as well as visitors, is a vital part of the region’s talent recruitment and retention efforts, and a center of culture.