The Iowa Economic Development Authority approved $100 million in funds for six redevelopment proposals across the state that are part of the Iowa Reinvestment Act program, including a planned soccer stadium in downtown Des Moines and a planned multipurpose arena at Merle Hay Mall.

Pro Iowa and Krause+, the real estate arm of Krause Group, plan to build a professional soccer stadium at the former Dico Inc. Superfund site on the south edge of downtown. The arena at Merle Hay Mall would be the new home of the Des Moines Buccaneers hockey team.


The leaders of the six projects requested a total of $151.6 million in new tax revenue through the Iowa Reinvestment Act, which allows communities to use new state hotel/motel and sales tax revenue generated by the developments to be reinvested in the area that development is located.

Des Moines Capital City reinvestment proposal:
  • $23.5 million approved, out of requested $27.1 million.
  • Size: 71.7 acres.
  • Locations: Former Dico Inc. at 200 S.W. 16th St.; an area between Grand Avenue and High Street and 15th and 17th streets; and an area between Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway and Tuttle Street and east of Southwest Ninth Street.
  • Total investment: $276.7 million, not including office and residential projects. If those developments were included, the total investment would be an estimated $540 million. An investment totaling $209.1 million includes the stadium, Global Plaza and other projects; investments totaling $67.6 million include 14 mixed-use projects that range in size from one to five stories.
  • Project highlights: Construction of a 6,300-seat multiuse outdoor stadium with three practice fields. The stadium, which would be owned by a nonprofit group, would be home to a professional soccer team. Construction of a 150-room, eight-story stadium hotel south of the stadium on the Dico site. The hotel would include a rooftop bar and view deck.
  • Read more: Details of $535 million proposed soccer stadium project revealed

Merle Hay (cities of Urbandale and Des Moines) proposal:
  • $26.5 million approved, out of requested $30 million.
  • Size: 74.6 acres, straddling Des Moines and Urbandale.
  • Location: Merle Hay Road and Douglas Avenue.
  • Total investment: $128.6 million.
  • Project highlights: Development of a 3,500-seat multiuse arena and training center in the former Younkers department store site and current Kohl’s department store building. The facility would be home to the Des Moines Buccaneers hockey team. The arena would include three additional sheets of ice for competition, training and recreation. Construction would be completed by December 2023. In addition, a multistory hotel would be attached to the arena and training center.
  • Read more: Merle Hay Mall to become home of Buccaneers hockey team

Ames Downtown reinvestment proposal:
  • $10 million approved, out of requested $21.5 million.
  • Size: 73.5 acres.
  • Location: Downtown Ames and Lincoln Way Corridor.
  • Total investment: $154 million.
  • Project highlights: Development of an Indoor Aquatics Center on a 3-acre site currently used as parking and office space for the Iowa Department of Transportation. Construction of a 136-room, full-service hotel with conference space along the Lincoln Way corridor. Other proposed developments would include apartments, retail and office buildings with ground-level retail.

Newton Legacy reinvestment proposal:
  • $14 million approved, out of requested $15.5 million.
  • Size: 75 acres.
  • Location: Downtown Newton and area between downtown and Des Moines Area Community College’s campus.
  • Total investment: $44.6 million.
  • Project highlights: Make improvements to the downtown area that include the addition of a boutique hotel, market-rate apartments and plaza. Upgrade the community college library.

Fort Dodge Corridor Plaza reinvestment proposal:
  • $17 million approved, out of requested $18 million.
  • Size: 35 acres.
  • Location: North of U.S. Highway 20 on the east side of Fort Dodge.
  • Total investment: $86.1 million.
  • Project highlights: Redevelopment of the Crossroads Mall site that would include razing a portion of the mall and adding smaller retail buildings, restaurants, a medical office building, mixed-use buildings that would include apartments, a hotel with meeting space, indoor and outdoor entertainment space, and a multiuse pavilion. The center of the plaza would include about 10,000 square feet of green space.
  • Read more: Fort Dodge seeking aid from state funding program for mall redevelopment project

Cedar Rapids Central Reinvestment proposal:
  • $9 million approved, out of requested $39.5 million.
  • Size: 30 acres.
  • Location: Downtown Cedar Rapids.
  • Total investment: $261 million.
  • Project highlights: Construction of apartments, hotel, bars, restaurants and up to 140,000 square feet of commercial space west of the Cedar Rapids River. Several riverfront amenities are also proposed. In addition, restoration of the historic Guaranty Bank Building and Old World Theater by development of two hotels with a total of 200 rooms.

Previous coverage: 6 proposed Iowa projects selected to continue vying for state tax revenue