Business Resources

The Historic Valley Junction Foundation offers many businesses resources to help make our neighborhood one of the best places in Greater Des Moines for small business.

Through our partnership based approach, we’ve achieved a lot! Here’s some other information you might want to know:

Over $2 million 5 95,000
Public and private
improvements completed
New district businesses
opened in 2020
Potential customers live
within ten minutes of here

We’re more than just a pretty storefront.

Valley Junction is one of the metro’s best small business marketplaces where local leaders organized over 30 years ago to adapt and succeed in changing times. Being here makes you part of the tradition and part of our future.

Supporting strong small businesses

Merchant committee

The Merchants on the Street Sidewalk Sales are an initiative of the merchant committee.

New – The Historic Valley Junction Foundation has re-established a merchant committee to help build collaboration and communication among our retailers and restaurateurs.

Businesses located in our district can contact us to become involved.

Business consulting

New – We are excited to launch the Main Street Iowa Virtual Small Business Lab to offer one on one consulting to our district businesses on a variety of topics. This service will match businesses with experienced small business coaches in a virtual, request-based, and on demand relationship. Most services are free and give entrepreneurs the chance to get an outside perspective on many topics from starting a new business to expanding online services, launching a new product line, finding new customers, and more.

Businesses located in our district can contact us to become involved.

Market data

Updated – One of our great advantages is our location right in the center of Greater Des Moines.  About 95,000 people live within ten minutes’ drive of Valley Junction with a median income among those households is $65,175. Our large and diverse group of customers helps a large and diverse group of businesses succeed here.

Check out our most recent economic profile, or contact us for more detailed data.

Launching a new business or expansion

Returns in 2021 – Main Street Iowa sponsors the Main Street Open 4 Business Grant Competition, a “Shark Tank” Main Street style. Main Street Open 4 Business is a competitive business competition to support business expansion and recruitment efforts.

Improving our neighborhood’s appearance

Signage

The City of West Des Moines has amended the Sign Ordinances, with many special provisions for Historic Valley Junction.

  • For the full City Sign Ordinance, please click HERE 
  • Click HERE for basic signage guidelines

Use of the sidewalk

We can help you receive a city permit for uses of the public sidewalk like signage, planters, benches, or outdoor restaurant seating.

Click HERE for the sidewalk encroachment permit application

Incentives for property improvement and development

The beautiful buildout at Vino209 was made possible in part by city-funded programs. (Photo: Vino209)

Design assistance & planning

Updated – Through our participation in the Main Street Iowa Program, we can help you access consulting resources to plan property improvements, envision a new design for your storefront, and more.  Main Street Iowa has recently re-imagined and improved this popular service.

Businesses located in our district can contact us to learn more.

Financial resources

City of West Des Moines

The City of West Des Moines sponsors a number of programs that help current or new property owners make improvements to their properties in Valley Junction. An overview of the programs is available on the city’s website.

Sometimes, funding applications for city programs open and close. When a program that’s only available sometimes opens,we will post about it here. Programs included are the Upper Story Housing Program, Regulatory Compliance Fund and Property Improvement Fund.

  • Currently, none of these special programs are accepting applications. (Updated September 2020).

State of Iowa

We are your exclusive local partner to access the Main Street Iowa Loan Program, a partnership program with the Iowa Finance Authority and the Federal Home Loan Bank-Des Moines. This program offers favorable rate loans for rehabilitation (with an emphasis on upper-floor housing) projects in designated Main Street districts.

We can also sponsor your application to the Main Street Iowa Challenge Grant, a competitive, bricks and mortar, dollar-for-dollar matching grant program offering up to $75,000 in support of transformative local projects.

Forms

Everybody likes forms, and we’ve got some really great ones, here for your enjoyment.

Business Information Update Form:  Use it to update your listing at valleyjunction.com, to tell us your hours of operation have changed, or who your main contacts are. Business Information Update Form (PDF)

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