A covered patio is proposed on the south side of a new Big Grove Brewery that is planned in the former Crescent building at 555 17th St. in Des Moines. Rendering by Pappageorge Haymes Partners

Two streets adjacent to property previously occupied by the Crescent Chevrolet auto dealership are proposed to be vacated by the city of Des Moines, a move that will allow a large patio and play lawn for patrons of Big Grove Brewery, city documents show.

Big Grove Brewery, with locations in Solon and Iowa City, plans to open a craft brewery and taproom next May in the one-story portion of the building at 555 17th St. Currently, Linden Street runs along the southern edge of the property; 16th Street borders the property’s east side.

Redeveloping the right-of-way along Linden Street would allow Big Grove to be seen from the heavily traveled Ingersoll Avenue, which would border the Crescent property on the south if the proposed changes are approved.

Krause Group, through a limited liability company, bought the former auto dealership property in 2014 and plans to redevelop it. Big Grove will occupy 12,720 feet of the building’s east side. Office and retail tenants are expected to occupy the two-story portion of the building, which includes 42,955 square feet.  

The redevelopment project is estimated to cost $17 million.

Krause+, the development arm of Krause Group, has requested that the portion of Linden Street south of the Crescent building be vacated, according to a city document. It also has requested that Krause Group be allowed to purchase the city of Des Moines property located between Linden and Ingersoll Avenue.

In addition, Krause+ has requested that right-of-way along 16th Street be vacated and sold to the group. The northern portion of 16th Street would be used to access a parking lot and adjacent property but would “become more a place for pedestrians than cars,” according to a city document.

City staff members are agreeable to the requests from Krause+, according to the city document.

The redevelopment of the Linden Street property and right-of-way will allow for a covered patio to be added to the south side of the brewery portion of the Crescent Building. (See map at right.)  Also, the area between the patio and Ingersoll Avenue would be redeveloped to include a ramp and terraces, according to an architectural rendering submitted to the city.

The former auto dealership property is one of about 10 parcels Krause Group owns in an area roughly bordered by High Street and Grand Avenue and 15th and 17th streets. The area is part of the Iowa Capital City Reinvestment District, which includes the former Dico site on which a 6,300-seat multiuse outdoor stadium is planned. The reinvestment district was recently approved to receive $23.5 million in state tax revenue.

The Des Moines City Council in February approved preliminary terms for a development agreement with Krause Group for the reinvestment district, which includes the Crescent property. However, redevelopment of the Crescent property is moving faster than the stadium project, prompting the city's staff to propose a separate agreement for the redevelopment of 555 17th St., according to a city document.

The city is proposing that the Crescent project receive a forgivable loan of $727,000, which is the appraised value of the city land Krause+ is seeking to buy. The loan would be considered paid when the project is completed, according to a city document. Also, the city is proposing that the project receive a little over $3 million in tax increment finance incentives, which is about 18% of total project costs.

Des Moines’ Urban Design Review Board is expected to review the proposed financial package and building designs at its meeting at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Richard A. Clark Municipal Service Center boardroom, 1551 E. Martin Luther King Jr. Parkway.

Related article:Big Grove Brewery will help revitalize northwest corner of downtown Des Moines


The western portion of the Crescent building is proposed to include retail, commercial and office space. Developers plan on retaining the Crescent Chevrolet sign on the roof of the building, located at 555 17th St. Rendering by Slingshot Architecture


What about the Crescent signs?
The iconic Crescent Chevrolet signs on the building that once was home of the auto dealership will be retained, according to a Des Moines city document. One sign is located on the roof of the building at 555 17th St.; the other is on the north side of the building above existing windows. Krause+, the development arm of Krause Group, plans to seek landmark status for the signs.