West Des Moines, Iowa

According to top-mba-universities, West Des Moines is a city in the state of Iowa, located just west of the capital city of Des Moines. It is bordered by Clive to the north, Urbandale to the east, and Windsor Heights to the south. The geography of West Des Moines is diverse, with rolling hills in some areas and flat plains in others. The climate is generally mild with hot summers and cold winters.

The history of West Des Moines dates back to the mid-1800s when it was first settled by settlers from New England. Since then, it has grown steadily into a vibrant city with a strong economy and diverse population. Its political climate is largely conservative, though there are pockets of liberalism throughout the city.

The economy of West Des Moines has traditionally been centered around agriculture and manufacturing, but more recently has shifted towards technology and service industries as well. There are many large companies that have offices in West Des Moines such as Wells Fargo, Microsoft, and Principal Financial Group. In addition to these larger employers, there are also numerous small businesses that contribute to the local economy.

West Des Moines is served by a number of public schools including Valley High School which serves grades 9-12 as well as seven elementary schools spread throughout the city. Higher education options include Drake University located in downtown Des Moines and Grand View University located just north of West Des Moines in Clive.

A few notable landmarks in West Des Moines include Jordan Creek Town Center which serves as a shopping mall for residents, Raccoon River Park which offers outdoor recreational activities such as fishing and boating, Valley Junction which houses many unique shops and restaurants as well as art galleries for visitors to explore, and Living History Farms which provides an interactive look at Iowa’s agricultural past with educational exhibits about farming practices from different eras.

Population: 46,403. Estimated population in July 2020: 52,768 (+13.7% change)
Males: 22,239 (47.9%), Females: 24,164 (52.1%)

Polk County

Zip codes: 50265, 50266.

Median resident age: 33.0 years
Median household income: $54,139
Median house value: $140,600

Races in West Des Moines:

  • White Non-Hispanic (91.1%)
  • Hispanic (3.0%)
  • Black (1.9%)
  • Two or more races (1.3%)
  • Other race (1.3%)
  • Asian Indian (0.9%)
  • Chinese (0.5%)

Ancestries: German (33.1%), Irish (15.4%), English (11.6%), Norwegian (5.7%), United States (5.5%), Dutch (4.9%).

Elevation: 820 feet

Land area: 26.8 square miles

West Des Moines, Iowa


West Des Moines is a rapidly growing city in the state of Iowa. According to the 2019 census, the population of West Des Moines was 65,608. This is an increase of 9.9% since 2010. The population density is 1,266 people per square mile which ranks it as the 24th most densely populated city in Iowa. The racial makeup of West Des Moines is 82.3% White, 6.6% African American, 4.8% Asian, 1.3% from other races and 4.1% from two or more races. In terms of age breakdown, 18% of the population is under 18 years old and 14.2% are over 65 years old; the median age in West Des Moines is 35 years old. Additionally, there are 28,481 households in West Des Moines with an average household size of 2.30 persons per household and a median household income of $81,925 annually in 2018 dollars according to U.S Census data estimates from 2019-2023 ACS 5-year estimates . The city also has a strong educational system with a total enrollment of 17,019 students across all grade levels at 47 schools run by the West Des Moines Community School District (WDMCSD). Furthermore, there are numerous recreational opportunities available within West Des Moines including parks, trails and golf courses as well as cultural offerings like art galleries and museums that make it an attractive place to live for families and individuals alike!

For population 25 years and over in West Des Moines

  • High school or higher: 96.3%
  • Bachelor’s degree or higher: 48.5%
  • Graduate or professional degree: 14.1%
  • Unemployed: 1.7%
  • Mean travel time to work: 18.0 minutes

For population 15 years and over in West Des Moines city

  • Never married: 27.3%
  • Now married: 57.4%
  • Separated: 1.0%
  • Widowed: 3.9%
  • Divorced: 10.3%

5.4% Foreign born (2.3% Asia, 1.4% Europe, 1.0% Latin America).

Population change in the 1990s: +14,087 (+43.6%).


Hospitals/medical centers near West Des Moines:



Airports certified for carrier operations nearest to West Des Moines:

  • DES MOINES INTL (about 8 miles; DES MOINES, IA; Abbreviation: DSM)
  • FORT DODGE REGIONAL (about 74 miles; FORT DODGE, IA; Abbreviation: FOD)
  • OTTUMWA INDUSTRIAL (about 97 miles; OTTUMWA, IA; Abbreviation: OTM)

Other public-use airports nearest to West Des Moines:

  • MORNINGSTAR FIELD (about 10 miles; DES MOINES, IA; Abbreviation: Y76)
  • ANKENY REGIONAL (about 16 miles; ANKENY, IA; Abbreviation: IKV)
  • WINTERSET-MADISON COUNTY (about 24 miles; WINTERSET, IA; Abbreviation: 3Y3)

Colleges and Universities

College/University in West Des Moines:

  • IOWA REAL ESTATE SCHOOL (Location: 3501 W TOWN PKY; Private, for-profit)

Colleges and Universities

Colleges/universities with over 2000 students nearest to West Des Moines:

  • DRAKE UNIVERSITY (about 6 miles; DES MOINES, IA; Full-time enrollment: 4,227)
  • DES MOINES COMMUNITY COLLEGE (about 15 miles; ANKENY, IA; Full-time enrollment: 6,959)
  • IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY (about 38 miles; AMES, IA; Full-time enrollment: 24,473)
  • GRACELAND UNIVERSITY-LAMONI (about 67 miles; LAMONI, IA; Full-time enrollment: 2,026)
  • IOWA CENTRAL COMMUNITY COLLEGE (about 71 miles; FT DODGE, IA; Full-time enrollment: 2,807)
  • INDIAN HILLS COMMUNITY COLLEGE (about 100 miles; OTTUMWA, IA; Full-time enrollment: 2,744)
  • HAWKEYE COMMUNITY COLLEGE (about 115 miles; WATERLOO, IA; Full-time enrollment: 3,292)


Public high schools in West Des Moines:

  • VALLEY HIGH SCHOOL (Students: 1,798; Location: 1140 35TH ST; Grades: 10 – 12)
  • WALNUT CREEK CAMPUS (Students: 187; Location: 815 8TH STREET; Grades: 09 – 12)

Biggest public primary/middle schools in West Des Moines:

  • JORDAN CREEK ELEMENTARY SCHOOL (Students: 763; Location: 4105 FULLER RD; Grades: PK – 06)
  • STILWELL JUNIOR HIGH SCHOOL (Students: 753; Location: 1601 VINE ST; Grades: 07 – 08)
  • WESTRIDGE ELEMENTARY (Students: 740; Location: 5500 E P TRUE PARKWAY; Grades: KG – 06)
  • VALLEY SOUTHWOODS (Students: 691; Location: 625 S 35TH ST; Grades: 09 – 09)
  • BROOKVIEW ELEMENTARY (Students: 584; Location: 8000 E.P. TRUE PARKWAY; Grades: KG – 05)
  • CROSSROADS PARK GRADE SCHOOL (Students: 520; Location: 1050 50TH ST; Grades: KG – 06)
  • FAIR MEADOWS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL (Students: 487; Location: 807 23RD ST; Grades: KG – 06)
  • WESTERN HILLS ELEMENTARY SCHOOL (Students: 404; Location: 600 39TH ST; Grades: KG – 06)
  • REX MATHES SCHOOL (Students: 311; Location: 1401 VINE ST; Grades: KG – 06)
  • CLEGG PARK ELEMENTARY SCHOOL (Students: 259; Location: 1020 8TH ST; Grades: KG – 06)


Library in West Des Moines:

  • WEST DES MOINES PUBLIC LIBRARY (Operating income: $1,493,902; Location: 4000 GEORGE M. MILLS CIVIC PKWY.; 127,551 books; 7,445 audio materials; 5,467 video materials; 318 serial subscriptions)