Our region is focused on attracting and building the economic foundations for future opportunities as well as the human capital that will be needed for them to succeed.


Job growth and prosperity are inextricably linked. Job growth drives economic expansion, income generation, poverty reduction, human capital development, entrepreneurship, and innovation. Simultaneously, prosperity and economic growth create an environment conducive to job creation, leading to a virtuous cycle of increased employment opportunities and improved living standards for the region.

To realize this vision of economic opportunity and prosperity, nurturing a diverse range of skills and expertise becomes crucial. Encouraging individuals to acquire new skills, pursue education and training, and enhance their qualifications not only strengthens their competitiveness in the job market but also contributes to the overall development of human capital in the region. A robust human capital base leads to higher productivity levels and cultivates a culture of innovation, enhancing the region’s economic competitiveness as a whole. As such, projects in this focus area include providing pathways for immigrants and new Iowans to enter and thrive in the workforce, while also recognizing and embracing the significant value of diverse talents and contributions within the community.An environment that fosters job creation also ignites entrepreneurial aspirations, inspiring individuals to establish their own businesses, launch startups, and pursue entrepreneurial endeavors. The Des Moines metro has steadily seen a rise in startups and creative partnerships thanks to the work of many innovative endeavors. However, many of these projects have been isolated, without benefitting from common resources, thread, or purpose. Ideas contemplated within

Capital Crossroads Roadmap, such as an Innovation District, aim to bring together start-ups, business incubators and accelerators in physical proximity, complemented by mixed-use housing, office, and retail. This comprehensive ecosystem fosters an environment that nurtures innovative ideas with significant potential to drive the community’s growth and impact.Finally, our region’s status as America’s Cultivation Corridor—a national leader in agriculture—is one of our most powerful differentiators. We are a top producer of crops and livestock, and also of great jobs in high-growth sectors including agribusiness and ag bioscience. We feed and fuel the world while preserving and respecting our natural environment.


1. Foster a robust and diversified regional economy that builds on current strengths and capitalizes on new opportunities emerging from technological advances.
2. Organizations are able to grow their operations in Central Iowa with sufficient, qualified local talent.
3. The region is a welcoming hub for immigrants and newcomers to connect with career paths including entrepreneurialism.
4. The region provides equitable job opportunities in agriculture and plays a leading role in community and sustainable agriculture.