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REVISIONS PROPOSED TO CHAPTER 134 (ZONING) AND CHAPTER 135 (PLANNING AND DESIGN). SEE NEWS AND EVENTS SECTION FOR MORE INFORMATION

City of Des Moines is planning for 2040 and beyond

The PlanDSM Comprehensive Plan was approved on April 25, 2016. With a vision of how the City will evolve for the year 2040 and beyond, PlanDSM is a policy basis for additional planning efforts, land use decisions and prioritizing capital projects. Key initiatives of PlanDSM are being implemented by the City including, but not limited to, the City Council's Strategic Plan (GuideDSM), approval of the City’s first Transportation Master Plan (MoveDSM), approval of the City’s Park and Recreation Master Plan (LiveDSM), approval of the City’s neighborhood revitalization strategy (InvestDSM) and approval the City’s Zoning Ordinance, Planning and Design Ordinance and Citywide Zoning Map.

 

About the Plan

PlanDSM | Creating Our Tomorrow  is the City of Des Moines' Comprehensive Plan for how it will grow into the future. It consists of a vision statement of values the City considers important for the future; goals and policies for eight different Plan elements; a separate element addressing social equity; an implementation chapter describing how the Plan can be realized; and, a Future Land Use Map.

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Existing Zoning Ordinance

The City’s Zoning Ordinance, Planning and Design Ordinance and Citywide Zoning Map implement the policies of PlanDSM by preserving and enhancing the existing character of the City’s neighborhoods, emphasizing urban design and quality development; providing a more user friendly format and providing greater predictability in development for neighborhoods and developers.

Individual sections of the Approved Zoning, Planning, and Design Ordinance can be downloaded below.

News & Events


The City’s Zoning Ordinance, Planning & Design Ordinance and Zoning map became effective of December 16, 2019. Three revisions have been approved to date. Chapter 134 was amended by Ordinance No. 15,865 on February 10, 2020 and Ordinance No. 15,982 on February 22, 2021. Chapter 135 was amended by Ordinance No. 15,962 on December 21, 2020.

Amendments

Amendments to existing Chapter 134 and existing Chapter 135 are currently being proposed. Please see the following PDF’s of the public hearing drafts for each chapter and lists of proposed non-substantive (minor) and substantive (major) amendments to each chapter below:

Please see the following schedule for continued opportunities to learn about the content of proposed amendments to the approved ordinance:

  • June 3, 2021* – Plan and Zoning Commission Public Hearing and Recommendation @ 6:00 PM.  For more meeting information see: Plan and Zoning Commission Meeting Schedule
  • June 14, 2021* – City Council Hearing (Set Date of Hearing) @ 5:00 PM. For more meeting information see: City Council Meetings & Agendas
  • June 28, 2021* – City Council Meeting (Public Hearing and 1st Reading) @ 5:00 PM. For more meeting information see: City Council Meetings & Agendas
  • July 19, 2021* – City Council Meeting (2nd Reading unless waived) @ 5:00 PM. For more meeting information see: City Council Meetings & Agendas
  • August 9, 2021* – City Council Meeting (3rd Reading unless waived) @ 5:00 PM. For more meeting information see: City Council Meetings & Agendas
  • Final PDF’s of the updated code will be posted 10 days after the final consideration by the City Council.

*Please check this schedule frequently for updates

Stay up-to-date by liking us on Facebook and following us on Twitter @PlanDSM .

If you have questions, please contact Michael Ludwig at 515-283-4192 or plandsm@dmgov.org


Upcoming Meetings


Plan and Zoning Commission
Public Hearing and Recommendation
For more meeting information see:
City Council Hearing
(Set Date of Hearing)
For more meeting information see:

Why update the 1965 Zoning Code?

The City of Des Moines’ current zoning code was written in 1965. Over those 54 years, more than 300 amendments have been added to the code. This has created conflicting procedures and inefficient processes which have led to permitting delays and frustration. A new zoning, planning, and design ordinance for the City of Des Moines will provide greater predictability, efficiency, and a more focused urban design for developers and neighborhoods.


Recognition & Awards

PlanDSM & Des Moines Diversity Highlighted by National APA

Planning Administrator Michael Ludwig discusses the background and outreach efforts that went into developing PlanDSM: Creating Our Tomorrow with Anna Read from American Planning Association.

PlanDSM Recognized for Comprehensive Plan Standards for Sustaining Places 

APA Comprehensive Plan Silver Award

PlanDSM: Creating Our Tomorrow was recognized by the American Planning Association (APA) for its values-based vision for the City of Des Moines and for integrating sustainability throughout the plan. The APA awarded PlanDSM the silver level, highest awarded this year. For more information, view the APA's announcement.

APA-Iowa 2016 Daniel Burnham Award For A Comprehensive Plan

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Awarded by the Iowa Chapter of the American Planning Association to the City of Des Moines for PlanDSM: Creating Our Tomorrow, recognizing innovation and insight in creating a sustainable vision for Des Moines as it continues to grow into the future.

Steering Committee

T. M. Franklin Cownie, Mayor
Joe Gatto, City Council
Dr. Tom Ahart, Des Moines Schools Superintendent
Todd Ashby, Des Moines Area Metropolitan Planning Organization
Pam Carmichael, Home Inc.
George Davis, Park and Recreation Board  
Vacant, Transportation Safety Committee
Larry James, Jr., ULI Iowa
Greg Jones, Plan and Zoning Commission 

Jeremy Lewis, Street Collective
Colleen MacRae, Urban Design Review Board  
Frank Owens, Neighborhood Revitalization Board  
Mel Pins, Zoning Board of Adjustment  
Elizabeth Presutti, General Manager DART
Scott Sanders, City Manager
Meg Schneider, Greater Des Moines Partnership
Rick Tollakson, Hubbell Realty Company

Contact Information

If you have questions, or cannot attend any of these meetings, please contact Michael Ludwig:


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