Major Changes Planned for Urban Park in Des Moines

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By Ben Hoppenworth

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - Organizers behind an expansive renovation of the century-old Water Works Park in Des Moines say they want to focus on the urban land's relationship to water.

The park is owned by Des Moines Water Works, the municipal water utility serving the city. While the park offers recreational amenities, organizers say the expansive space is underused and needs an overhaul.

The 1,500 acres near downtown is in the beginning stages of its renovation, which formally began in 2011 through a nationwide design competition. A Massachusetts firm is now leading the effort.

Bill Stowe, CEO and general manager of Des Moines Water Works, says a Sept. 10 open house will give the public a chance to see what the design team is working on, as well as a chance to suggest ideas.

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