A Texas developer may have found "a better mousetrap" for attracting young professionals to West Des Moines with a proposal for a high-end residential development at the Village at Ponderosa.


Amit Goel, who at one time had made an offer to buy the vacant Riverfront Y property in downtown Des Moines, presented plans for development of the West Des Moines property today to a working group of the West Des Moines City Council and city staff.


Limited liability companies linked to Goel paid $2.75 million in June 2014 to Great Western Bank for 18 lots and Crescent View condominiums, the last remaining properties that eventually were returned to banks after developer Jon Garnaas' plans for a tony residential and commercial development crashed during the financial crisis.


Goel and designer Dennis Reynolds, who also designed the Garnaas project, said the plan is to complete the development in phases with an eye toward attracting young professionals who otherwise would turn to apartment complexes in the East Village and other areas of downtown Des Moines.


Plans call for a total of 500 residential units in four buildings, a 100-room hotel and single-family housing. Nearly 44 percent of the area would be devoted to open spaces. Some areas could be devoted to a dog park for tenants, bocci courts and public art. There will be roughly 100,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor amenities.


"We are creating the mousetrap where you can have these people here stay; they don't have to go downtown," Goel said.



For more details about the development and comments from West Des Moines Mayor Steve Gaer and City Manager Tom Hadden: Continue reading >>>