The West Des Moines community has seen rapid economic growth since the implementation of its 2003 Economic Development Plan. The growth of the economy in recent years has begun to decrease, therefore, West Des Moines commissioned AngelouEconomics to aid in the development of strategies to retain their economic momentum. The project leaders determined the vital industries to the local economy and how the city could preserve them while serving to help West Des Moines achieve a critical objective-economic diversification. The reliance on retail and financial services as tax revenue makes the area particularly vulnerable the cyclicality of the economy.
The idea behind the plan is that West Des Moines has evolved from just a major employment center to an economy that must take on a more global presence. According to AE, the city must enhance and refine what the city has already been doing well (providing infrastructure, supporting small business, etc.), while simultaneously capturing new economic development opportunities (pursuing logistics and life sciences, building relationships with Iowa State University, DMACC, etc.) that have been core focuses of the city up until now. AE’s plan provides the city an ambitious strategic roadmap to implement over the next 3-5 years. It represents achievable options for the city that are designed to be led primarily by the city’s Community & Economic Development Department.