News

Showing 2016

29-story tower being planned for the Younkers site

By:  Joel Aschbrenner A local development team wants to build a 29-story tower on the empty lot where the Younkers department store once stood in downtown Des Moines. Blackbird Investments is already renovating the portion of building that survived a massive fire in March 2014. It now wants to build a $60 million high-rise on the empty lot next door,…

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Blackbird proposes 29-story residential tower for former Younkers site

BY KENT DARR, Senior Staff Writer Blackbird Investments plans a 29-story mixed-use building in a vacant site once occupied by Younkers department store in downtown Des Moines. The building would include 220 residential units that would include market-rate rental apartments and for-sale units. In addition, it would have 7,000 square feet of ground-floor retail fronting…

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A Des Moines Landmark May Rise From Its Ashes

By: JOE GOSE DES MOINES — The Younkers department store was an anchor in this city’s downtown for over 100 years. And after it closed in 2005, the prime location was central to a plan to revitalize a long-neglected commercial corridor. A fire in 2014, however, derailed momentum for the project, under which the store,…

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New restaurant brings Southern cuisine to Des Moines

By:  Susan Stapleton Marketing pro Chris Diebel is ready to jump into the hospitality industry in a whole new way. The managing director of LPCA Public Strategies plans to take his three-day pop-up restaurant from 2013 and turn it into a full-fledged restaurant.

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St. Joe’s update coming Tuesday

By:  Matt Milner OTTUMWA — Most city council meetings don’t draw large crowds, but the one next Tuesday just might. One of the focuses for the meeting is the renovation of the old St. Joseph Hospital. Blackbird Investments announced plans to convert the facility into about 70 apartments and addressed the city last May. The…

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Council passes budget, hears Blackbird update

By:  Matt Milner OTTUMWA — Mayor Tom Lazio told council members Tuesday conversations with Blackbird Investments lead him to believe the company remains committed to renovation of the former St. Joseph Hospital. The long-stalled project seeks to transform the hospital into up to 70 apartments. Work was supposed to begin last year. But construction estimates…

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Younkers/Wilkins renovation underway

By: Kent Darr Crews have begun removing lead paint and other environmental contaminants from the former Younkers building in downtown Des Moines to clear the way for a historic rehabilitation that could be completed later this year. Justin Doyle, a principal with owner Blackbird Investments LLC, said permits have been pulled for the $18 million…

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