Des Moines Real Estate & Information
Des Moines Real Estate & Information
As the largest city in Iowa and the state's capital, Des Moines is a major hub for commerce and a desirable place to live. According to the last census, conducted in 2010, Des Moines has a population of 203,433 people. Des Moines is also considered an important political city on a national level – it is the location of the first caucuses of the presidential primary cycle, which has led many candidates to set up their campaign headquarters in Des Moines. Also a major focal point of the country’s insurance industry – Des Moines was named as the third largest insurance capital of the world – and boasts a large financial service and publishing business base as well. Considering its importance in both politics and business, it’s no surprise that Des Moines real estate continues to attract plenty of buyers over the years.
Shopping and Dining
As the largest city in the state as well as the capital, Des Moines residents have ample options. As far as restaurants go, residents won’t find a larger variety of choices anywhere else in the state. In the mood for barbeque? Try out The Flying Mango or Woody’s Smoke Shack. Prefer to grab a burger? Drop in at the Zombie Burger + Drink Lab. Trying to decide between Mexican and Korean? Go to the unique fusion restaurant, Tacopocalypse. The options are practically never-ending.
The same could easily be said about the shopping scene. Bookworms can stock up on literature at The Book Store or Beaverdale Books. Antique hunters can search for their holy grail at the West End Architectural Salvage or the Funky Finds Vintage and Retro shop. These are just a few examples of the many locally owned stores in Des Moines – the city has its share of larger retail stores as well.
Parks and Recreation
The Des Moines Parks and Recreation department has succeed in helping to sustain a beautiful parks system as well as providing residents with extensive recreation options. The city is home to 72 parks (including dog parks), which covers more than 4,000 acres of land and consists of 45 miles worth of trails to walk, hike or bike through. Many of these parks boast picnic areas, ponds, fishing, playgrounds, bike rentals, boat rentals, BMX tracks, tennis courts, volleyball courts, basketball courts, skateboarding areas and much more. The department also oversees more than 16 programs focusing on sports, sport instruction, water recreation, environmental education, neighborhood beautification and volunteerism, just to name a few. As far as recreation goes, both children and adults have tons of choices, from adult leagues that include flag football, wiffle ball, tennis, kickball, fall softball and more to children’s leagues, including youth basketball, youth flag football, pee wee indoor soccer, pee wee outdoor soccer and pee wee basketball to name a few.
The unemployment rate in Des Moines is currently at around 4.8 percent, a very admirable number considering the size of the city as well as the unemployment rate of the country as a whole, which is sitting at around 6.3 percent since April of 2014. Career opportunities are plentiful for those in the financial sector. Des Moines is home to companies such as Athene USA Insurance, Principal Financial Group and EMC Insurance Companies to name just a couple. Big corporations with large operations in the city include Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company, Monsanto and Wells Fargo.
Schools, Health and Transportation
Children of Des Moines real estate owners attend the Des Moines Public Schools district, which is the largest community school district in the state with 63 total schools that includes 38 elementary schools, 11 middle schools and 5 high schools. As of the 2012-2013 school year, there were 32,062 students enrolled. There are a number of higher learning institutions in Des Moines as well, including Drake University, Grand View University and William Penn University.
There are several excellent hospitals throughout the area. These include the Mercy Medical Center, the Iowa Lutheran Hospital and the Iowa Methodist Medical Center. The Mercy Medical Center contains emergency medical services and a trauma center. It is the longest operating hospital in the city and staffs more than 7,100 employees, including more than 800 physicians.
Residents of Des Moines have access to a mass transit service run by DART (Des Moines Area Regional Transit Authority). It’s also commonly referred to as the MTA. They are responsible for an extensive bus system as well as a carpool and vanpool system. The Des Moines International Airport provides commercial travel to and from the area.