The first Des Moines Skywalk bridge was built in 1969 and is now made up of 45 bridges.
A couple of years ago, some downtown businesses suggested the skywalk needing some updating according to Calvin Miller, “They understood more than we did that the signs are out of date and not current.”
In 2010, consultants looked at Des Moines’ Skywalk system to determine what improvements could be made to the 30 year old network. One of the first things they found was outdated signs and maps caused by new buildings and Skywalk bridges being built.
As a result, the City spent $460,000 on new larger signs with energy efficient bulbs. The maps were also updated.
The project has now been completed but Miller of the City Engineering Department says the Skywalk will continue to be updated, “Maybe some new bridges installed, just some more updates to the current bridges, maybe some new lighting… I think it’s a vital part of downtown Des Moines. We’re able to easily access all the businesses throughout downtown and the restaurants.”
According to the Des Moines Convention and Visitors Bureau, the Skywalks has more than 4 miles of covered indoor walking.