Des Moines Water Works invites the public to see the changes in the works for one of the largest urban parks in the nation. A public open house for the Water Works Park Master Plan will be held on January 29, 5:00-7:00 p.m. at Des Moines Art Center, located at 4700 Grand Avenue in Des Moines. A brief presentation will begin at 5:30 p.m.
Des Moines Water Works operates Water Works Park, a 1,500-acre urban park in the heart of Des Moines, and a major component of the city’s open space system and trail network. The park is also home to Arie den Boer Arboretum, one of the world’s largest collections of flowering crab apple trees. Water Works Park is bisected by the Raccoon River and a three mile long infiltration gallery, major sources of drinking water for the Des Moines metro area.
Des Moines Water Works, in collaboration with Iowa State University Department of Landscape Architecture, hosted an international design competition in 2011 to reinvent Water Works Park. Sasaki Associates, with RDG Planning & Design and Applied Ecological Services, was selected as the design competition winner out of 44 proposals. The Master Plan process included public outreach and community involvement.
“Finalizing and presenting the Master Plan is a significant step toward re-envisioning and renovating Water Works Park into an education and recreation destination,” said Bill Stowe, CEO and General Manager, Des Moines Water Works. “The Master Plan highlights opportunities for education and emphasizes the role water plays in the community, as well as incorporates additional recreational features throughout the park.”
Funding for the Master Plan was provided through generous community support. Grants and funds totaling $165,000 were received from the Allied Construction Services, Bankers Trust, CDS Global, Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines Leadership Circle, Gray’s Lake Park & Meredith Trail Fund, Greater Des Moines Public Art Foundation, Merchants Bonding Company, Polk County and The Principal Financial Group. Donations from private donors total an additional $35,000.
A Water Works Park foundation is being established to coordinate fundraising and implementation of the Master Plan. Implementation of the Master Plan could begin early in 2014.