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Waukee Economic Development

Posted on: January 4, 2021

Waukee Issued Record 1,489 Building Permits in 2020

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Both economic development and residential construction continue to thrive in Waukee. The City of Waukee’s Development Services Department issued a record 1,489 building permits in 2020.

“We’ve watched this pace of development in awe and a bit astonished that even in a year as uncertain and filled with challenges as 2020, interest and investment in Waukee did not wane,” said Waukee Mayor Courtney Clarke. “We are thrilled with these economic successes. Even more importantly, City leaders look forward to life eventually returning to ‘normal’ as we continue our work to preserve strong community bonds and quality of life in Waukee.”

The valuation of the building permits issued by the City in 2020 totals $245.7 million, topping Waukee’s previous record-setting 2019 ($209.8 million). Of the 1,489 permits issued, 411 were for single-family housing, 226 were for townhomes, four were for multi-family developments and 19 were for commercial developments. The remaining permits fall into the “Other” category, including projects such as additions, alterations, decks, etc.

On trend with setting records, the City saw its highest single-family housing growth in history in 2020. The 2020 single-family permit valuations totaled $116.6 million, which accounts for more than double last year’s total of $56.7 million. 

“Through effective planning and infrastructure investments, the City is able to work with local developers and builders who in turn provide a variety of housing types and price points, which is key to this level of success,” said Waukee Development Services Director Brad Deets. “The City Council has created flexibility within its development process, allowing builders to meet the current market demand. The City also continues to create new amenities with parks, open spaces and trails, making Waukee an appealing choice for new residents.”

Commercial growth also remained strong in 2020. Some 2020 projects of note include: 

  • Kettleview Development - Encompass Building
  • Kinship Brewing Company
  • Prairie Crossing Development – RE/MAX Concepts and Lena Nails Lashes Brows
  • Waukee Marketplace – UnityPoint Express, Stiletto Nails & Lashes and Buff City Soap
  • Elite Eye Care
  • Hy-Vee Fast & Fresh/Smokey Row Coffee
  • Old Station Craft Meats
  • Paragon Performance
  • Kindercare

“These additions to the tax base benefit the growing Waukee community even beyond the services they provide. Revenues from commercial property taxes allow us to build new, and maintain existing, infrastructure without increasing the City’s property tax levy,” said Mayor Clarke. “The upcoming fiscal year is filled with capital improvement projects strategically planned to support the community’s expansion.”

Construction is expected to start in 2021 on these City of Waukee projects:

  • NW 2nd Street/NW Sunrise Drive Phase 2B
  • NW Douglas Parkway Phases 2A & 2B
  • Westward extension of Douglas Parkway to Warrior Lane
  • Grand Prairie Parkway and SE Ashworth Road intersection improvements
  • Ashworth Road and Ute Avenue intersection improvements
  • Warrior Lane Improvements Phase 1
  • SE Laurel Street expansion
  • Final stages of Waukee Public Library stormwater improvements
  • Triumph Park 

In May 2020, the U.S. Census Bureau named Waukee the fastest-growing (large) city in Iowa, based on population growth since 2010. Waukee now has an estimated population of 24,089. City officials project that Waukee’s population could reach 35,000 by the year 2030.

See the economic development tour video from August 2020.

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