Renovation Work Begins On Des Moines Younkers Building

The Younkers Building in downtown Des Moines. (image via


By Richard Pratt

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Work has begun to transform a historic downtown Des Moines department store into apartments and retail space.

The Des Moines Register reports Tuesday that a block of Walnut Street has been closed and fences are going up to enable work to begin on the $36 million renovation of the Younkers Building.

The 114-year-old department store has been vacant since it closed in 2005.

Madison, Wis.-based developer Alexander Co. is receiving about $15 million in state and federal historic tax credits for the project.

Work is expected to be completed in late 2014. Walnut Street likely will remain closed until next summer.

When finished, the building will house 120 residential units for lower-income tenants and two floors of retail space.

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