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Invest DSM to spend $50M on metro neighborhoods

Two young people planting a tree outside a home

By Todd Magel for KCCI


Des Moines unveiled a $50 million plan Tuesday to revitalize city neighborhoods.

Invest DSM is a joint effort between the city and Polk County to begin spending local option sales tax dollars to help homeowners renovate homes and improve neighborhoods.

Amber Lynch, a veteran Des Moines city planner, will take over the Invest DSM nonprofit organization.

She said the program will spend $50 million over 10 years to make improvements in four pilot neighborhoods: Franklin, Drake, Columbus Park and Oak Park.

“This is exciting,” Lynch said. “We are approaching it in a way that we really haven’t before.”

Lynch said planners have already surveyed the houses in each neighborhood and have a good idea of which ones need improvement. The goal is to update the homes without removing charm and character.

“We want to bring our money and put it alongside theirs to invest back in these homes and make sure our neighborhoods are healthy and thriving over the long term,” she said.

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