Capital Crossroads, a collaboration of regional organizations and residents, has announced a new regional plan called Central Iowa’s Roadmap to Opportunity and Prosperity for All that will be executed by new Executive Director Kaity Patchett and the Capital Crossroads Regional Council. Patchett starts her new role on Jan. 16.

In the new plan, the organization has identified six critical outcomes to achieve its goals of economic opportunity, community and cultural connection, thriving neighborhoods and youth investment in Central Iowa.

The plan outlines two overarching outcomes: regionalism and equity and inclusion. Additionally, it addresses four specific outcomes to tackle regional challenges affecting Central Iowa, such as a lack of affordable housing, a growing aging population and declining K-12 enrollment in Polk County, among others. The four outcomes are:

Placemaking: Designing accessible and inclusive public spaces.
Workforce housing: Identifying housing that is located near regional employment opportunities.
Job growth: Developing career pathways that attract and retain a “thriving workforce.”
Education: Cultivating high-quality education and child care opportunities for the next generation.

“The Capital Crossroads Roadmap is one of the most collaborative regional plans to date and sets a new standard of collective visioning,” said Dan Houston, chair of the Capital Crossroads Regional Council. “I’m looking forward to putting this roadmap into action and seeing the impact it will make for future generations.”

The Regional Council will serve as community liaison to activate the Capital Crossroads Roadmap. In addition to Houston, the council is chaired by:

Teree Caldwell-Johnson, president of Oakridge Neighborhood Services
Courtney Clarke, mayor of the city of Waukee
Ben McLean, CEO of Ruan Transportation Management Systems
Ian Roberts, superintendent of Des Moines Public Schools

The full plan is available on the Capital Crossroads website.

Published in the Des Moines Business Record, January 12, 2024.