Neighborhood Services

Realignment of the community development, housing services and economic development is a long-term strategy that will improve efficiency, better utilize resources and staff and assist in succession planning.

Neighborhood Services is made up of the former Housing Services divisions as well as Neighborhood Inspections, Federal Funds Administration, Zoning Enforcement and Property Investment. Efforts will include administration of rental units, Section 8 housing, neighborhood stabilization, new property maintenance guidelines and coordination with neighborhood associations.

The City of Des Moines is partnering with Invest DSM to implement a citywide Block Challenge Grant ProgramThe next grant cycle will open May 1, 2022. Please check back at a later date for information on future Block Challenge Grant opportunities. 

Neighborhood Services Emphasis

Neighborhood Services Department will place greater emphasis on services in our neighborhoods – this includes assisting with the Invest DSM revitalization initiative, implementation of property improvement guidelines, increased efforts related to affordable and workforce housing.  This department will retain traditional neighborhood initiates including rental inspections, code enforcement, low rent housing, federal fund distribution and other supportive neighborhood services.


To better address the changing goals of Des Moines over the next 20 to 30 years the city is realigning our economic development and community development departments.  This will allow the city to concentrate on both our commercial development neighborhoods and neighborhoods while continuing the efforts that has made Des Moines the robust city that it is today through thoughtful long-term planning, innovative revitalization efforts and sound economic development. 

DMARC Mobile Food Pantry
Located at Merle Hay Mall Applebee's

The City of Des Moines, in partnership with DMARC, Merle Hay Mall, Des Moines Area Regional Transit Authority (DART), and Merle Hay Road Applebee's, has launched a new mobile food pantry site at Merle Hay Mall. This mobile food pantry will be open every Tuesday from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm.

Learn More Here


Upcoming Job Postings

Please check for the most updated list of employment opportunities available.

Neighborhood Services Contacts

For more information regarding the reorganization and the Neighborhood Services Department feel free to contact:

Chris Johansen, Neighborhood Services Department Director at (515) 323-8976 or 

SuAnn Donovan, Deputy Director of the Neighborhood Services Department at (515) 283-4516 or

Our Mission
To partner with the residents of our community to provide outstanding services to our neighborhoods while maintaining Des Moines social, physical, and business environments.

For general assistance contact us at (515) 283-4046.