Des Moines is preparing to host a large influx of visitors this week as over 15,000 guests are expected at Wells Fargo Arena for the Get Motivated seminar Thursday, September 17. Global Spectrum, the management company of the Iowa Events Center, is working multiple community and state organizations to ensure both visitors and commuters have a smooth, safe trip into downtown Thursday.

“A team consisting of leaders from Polk County, the Iowa Department of Transportation, the City of Des Moines, the Des Moines Police Department, the Convention & Visitors Bureau, DART, and Global Spectrum have come together with a plan that will allow our visitors to enjoy their visit to Des Moines, while minimizing the effect the increased traffic will have on the morning commute,” said Global Spectrum’s Matt Homan, General Manager of the Iowa Events Center.

In order to accommodate the parking demands of a major daytime event, many FREE alternatives will be available all day Thursday for Get Motivated attendees. People are encouraged to consider all of their options for parking, and allow extra time before attempting to travel downtown. Various shuttle pick-up points have been secured to help ease congestion around Wells Fargo Arena and downtown Des Moines. Free shuttles, with both pick-up and drop-off access, will operate from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. on a regular schedule, at the following locations:
  • Iowa State Fairgrounds – enter the fairgrounds at the corner of University and E 36th. This lot is suggested for those travelling from the North and East of Des Moines.
  • Waterworks Park – enter off Fleur Drive at the stoplight by Gray’s Lake and proceed straight to the first open grass area on your left. This lot is suggested for those traveling from the South
  • Southridge Mall – Get Motivated parking is on the North side of Sears. This lot is suggested for those travelling from the South as well.
Each shuttle will pick-up and drop-off at a designated location near Wells Fargo Arena. This location will be consistent all day, ensuring the attendees can catch their shuttle at the same location they were dropped off at in the morning. In addition to the shuttle service, downtown can accommodate vehicles parking in the following locations:
  • Iowa Events Center Parking Lots ($6): The closest lot for attendees, but also the quickest to fill up. Entrances to these lots are off 3rd, 5th, and Crocker Streets.
  • City of Des Moines Parking Garages ($5): City parking garages are located throughout downtown with convenient skywalk access to Wells Fargo Arena. Payment is collected as you enter the garage each time. The city provides signage along major arteries to downtown with up to the minute parking garage availability.
  • Street Parking (metered): Street parking is available with parking meter access. Pay attention to the pricing listed on the meter, as many locations have different time limits, or parking restrictions during parts of the day (typically 4-6 p.m.)
  • Principal Park ($6) – This lot is suggested as overflow from people travelling from the west.
  • 11th Street and MLK downtown ($5) – This lot is suggested for people travelling from the West.
For more information, and a printable PDF with parking and shuttle information, please click here. Click here for maps of Greater Des Moines.