A $250,000 city contract is on the table for Tuesday’s City Council meeting


Residents of Ames gather Sept. 25, 2018, at City Hall.

Talon Delaney

Big changes could be coming to Ames.

Tuesday’s City Council meeting will discuss preparations for funding and assigning a comprehensive plan to guide the city through projected growth and expansion into the year 2040.

The city set aside $250,000 in the 2017-18 fiscal year budget to prepare this project, and requested proposals to nearly 30 different consulting firms to aid with the plans. Nine of those firms responded.

The council will also discuss plans to alter parking policies in the downtown area and ideas for expanding neighborhood workshop programs. The meeting will begin at 6 p.m. Tuesday in the Ames City Council Chambers.

For a complete list of the meeting’s agenda, click here.

Ames City staff evaluated the nine consulting firms that responded and ranked them “based on a combination of the cost, understanding of the community and project requirements, qualifications and experience… experience with similar projects, response from references, and the proposed timeline for the completion of the plan,”  according to City Council documents.

The Des Moines-based company RDG Planning and Design ranked number one but the council has yet to decide which firm will be awarded the quarter million dollar contract.

Possible changes to parking in Ames’s downtown district comes from a public want for more employee parking in the area, as well as a referral for a comprehensive parking study. The study could cost as much as $125,000, and would “define the existing and future parking supply and demand conditions and also locations where parking capacity is an issue,” according to council documents.

Employees are having issues with parking throughout the day, and are receiving tickets due to a lack of parking options in the district. The council will discuss possible amenities to this issue but don’t want to infringe on any parking revenue generated in the area.

The City of Ames has multiple neighborhood programs focused on community engagement like Street N Greet, Curb Replacement, Street Painting and a variety of grants. If the council agrees, they will discuss measure to expand these programs, such as updating neighborhood association websites and adding on to new programs at another meeting.