Posted September 7, 2011 by KCCI

Community leaders are developing a new strategic plan for the Des Moines metro area and surrounding counties, called Capital Crossroads. The plan was introduced at a news conference on Wednesday. The five-year plan focuses on job creation, diverse talent and quality of life includes a nine county area.

It calls for the development of a bio-science corridor between Ames and Des Moines, encouraging more business start-ups, expanding local greenways and bike trails and establishing the region as a wellness capital.

The effort is supported through a variety of organizations including Bravo Greater Des Moines, Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines, Des Moines Area Metropolitan Planning Organization, Greater Des Moines Partnership, Iowa State University, Prairie Meadows, and United Way of Central Iowa.

“The new vision is really the end of the beginning,” said Barry Griswell of the Community Foundation of Greater Des Moines and one of the project Tri-Chairs. “Now the real work of implementation begins. Our plan is not intended to be an exhaustive list of tactics for the future. Rather, the plan is intended to be a framework that captures concepts, strategies, partnerships, and process that can guide our efforts to achieve the vision. From this platform, we begin planning how we’ll get there.”

Close to 5,000 community representatives participated in developing the plan.

“Capital Crossroads will help us create jobs and economic growth,” said fellow Tri-Chair Angela Connolly of Polk County. “By aggressively preparing for the future, creating a fertile business climate, and marketing its many attributes, Greater Des Moines will achieve its vision of being a world class community with an unparalleled quality of life punctuated by accessibility, sustainability, and affordability.”