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The City of West Des Moines is making excellent progress on building our conduit network! We’ve learned a lot along the way, and as a result, we have a few updates to announce that will streamline how we move forward with connecting the conduit network to homes and businesses.

How it Works

To increase efficiencies and let property owners work directly with the internet provider of their choice, the City will no longer be installing “drops” or connections from the conduit network (in the city-owned Right of Way) to individual homes and businesses. The drops will now be installed when you, the homeowner or property owner, select an internet service provider who will then handle installing the connection and the services they provide for you.  

This means that your yard (from your home or business to the parking or Right of Way) will not be used to install a connection to the conduit network until you decide to purchase services from a provider in the City’s network. If you decide not to purchase service, a connection to the conduit network from your home or business will not be installed.

For residents who signed up on this website to connect to the conduit network, we want to thank you for your interest in this project! Please know that your information and your email address will not be shared with anyone, and that includes the internet providers utilizing our conduit network. 

Going forward, if you decide to pay for internet services, you will work directly with any of the providers using our network to select your plan, learn about any potential charges for construction or “drops,” and determine when your connection will be installed.  

We look forward to building the remaining phases of our citywide open access conduit network. The map below shows the areas that have been completed and those that we’ll be working on this year.


* Pending final punchlist and cleanup by another contractor. Disclaimer: These dates are construction estimates and depend on weather conditions as well as product availability and contractor scheduling. A more accurate time frame will be communicated to neighborhoods as each segment construction date approaches.

Check out the latest construction updates.

General Frequently Asked Questions

How will this project work?2022-01-19T17:34:43-05:00

The City of West Des Moines is building a citywide conduit network (a system of underground pipes that protect fiber cables and wiring). This conduit will be used by internet providers to make high-speed internet available for residents and businesses to purchase in West Des Moines. Internet providers who license space in the conduit network will be able to use the conduit to install their own fiber or cable that will be used to provide West Des Moines homes and businesses with internet service.

Why is the City of West Des Moines taking on the Digital Enterprise? 2021-03-22T17:15:45-04:00

Based on community surveys, feedback from local business leaders and the general direction of society, fast, reliable internet service is a priority. As part of the WDM 2036 Plan, the City identified technology as a strategy to improve quality of life for residents and attract and retain businesses. Our most recent Citizen Survey also identified high-speed internet as the #1 improvement needed in our neighborhoods.

How Does the Digital Enterprise Benefit the Taxpayers2022-01-19T17:35:23-05:00
  • Access for all residents and businesses in West Des Moines. Historically, high-speed or 1 Gig internet was only available in some neighborhoods. The conduit network will make it easier for providers to extend world-class internet access, which is essential in today’s world, to anyone, no matter where you live in our community.
  • Studies have shown that competition among many providers in the marketplace offers residents the opportunity to enjoy the highest quality customer service at the lowest possible rates.
Will this project affect my taxes? 2021-03-22T17:15:45-04:00

Providers who wish to use the City’s conduit network to reach their customers will license space in the conduit for a fee which will help pay for the City’s cost of constructing the network.

Can anyone get it?2022-01-19T17:35:45-05:00
  • Yes! The conduit system is going to be installed everywhere within West Des Moines.
  • As high-speed providers license space in the conduit, residents will be able to choose a provider and plan that meets their needs and budget. This provider will then install a connection from the property owner’s house or business to the conduit network in the city-owned Right of Way.
  • The City is also working on programs to make internet access affordable on a monthly basis for those whose income may qualify. We’re working on plans to utilize federal grant programs to make this a possibility. Stay tuned for more information!
Are There Any Providers Currently Planning to Serve My Property Through the Conduit System?2022-01-19T17:36:01-05:00

Yes, and the City hopes to add additional provider options over time.

What’s all this going to cost me?2022-01-19T17:36:22-05:00

Property owners will have to work directly with the providers in the network to find out what each provider will charge and whether or not there will be a charge for installing a connection to the City’s conduit network.

How is the City paying for this project?2021-04-21T15:25:26-04:00

The construction of the conduit network is an infrastructure project that is included in our capital improvement budget. The City issues bonds every year (sometimes several times a year) to pay for public infrastructure. One key difference with the conduit network project is that this infrastructure will actually generate revenue (unlike roads and bridges) from internet providers who use the conduit network. The City’s excellent AAA credit rating allows us to borrow money at extremely low interest rates, and that makes it possible for us to undertake a variety of projects that make West Des Moines a great place to live and work.

Although the City Council always has the authority to raise or lower taxes, the funds to pay for construction of the conduit network have been budgeted in a fiscally responsible manner that helps us maintain our outstanding credit rating with Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s.

Are you paying any internet providers money to participate?2022-01-19T17:37:15-05:00

No. The City is constructing a conduit network that will be owned and maintained by the City and available to be licensed by multiple internet providers. These license fees will be used by the City to help pay the cost of constructing, operating and maintaining the conduit network, which reduces the cost of the public infrastructure to the City’s taxpayers.

Did residents have an opportunity to comment on the conduit project?2022-01-19T17:37:31-05:00

Yes! The City Council held three public hearings related to the conduit project—one prior to approving the applicable Urban Renewal Plan, one prior to authorizing the financing for the project, and one prior to approving the first City-wide license agreement. The City Council also published notice informing citizens they could petition for an election prior to authorizing the financing for the conduit project, and no petition was filed. All City Council meetings where the conduit project was discussed were properly noticed and open to the public.

Construction FAQ

What are the specified work hours?2021-03-22T17:20:23-04:00

Work hours are specified in the contract from 6:30 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. Monday through Friday. Depending on the type of activities the contractor could be limited to 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. at the discretion of the engineer. Weekend work is not anticipated, but at the contractor’s request this could be approved by council.

Will I have disruption of any other services during construction?2022-01-19T17:15:24-05:00

The contractor is required by law to use a locating service to locate all other utilities in the area before digging. With construction, there is always a possibility service lines could be damaged and temporary disruption could occur. The contractor is required to have a licensed plumber on site for any water service disruption during construction. All other respective utilities would be notified by the contractor if a utility is damaged and needed immediate repair.

Will I have access to my driveway?2021-03-22T17:19:46-04:00

Residents should always have access to their driveway during construction. There could be times when equipment is being moved when there may be a short wait until the equipment has passed, before access can be made.

How will my yard be restored after crews have completed the work?2022-01-19T17:15:40-05:00

The contractor is required by contract to repair all disturbed areas once work is completed. Seeding and mulch will also be used in the Right of Way. If permanent seeding can’t be completed within the seeding dates specified in the contract, then temporary erosion control measures (hydromulch) will be used until permanent seeding can be completed.  Permanent seeding dates are scheduled to take place citywide during two separate intervals: April 15 to June 15 and August 10 to October 15.

Who do I contact if I have a construction-related question or complaint?2021-03-23T10:16:31-04:00

The first point of contact will be the on-site inspector for the specific project. To reach the Construction Question Hotline, please call 515-222-3578.

What if the contractor damages my driveway or sidewalk during construction?2021-03-22T17:18:37-04:00

Any damage claims will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the City. If after reviewing, it is determined the contractor was responsible for the damage, the contractor will make repairs at the contractor’s expense.

Will this construction impact my garbage pickup or mail delivery?2021-03-22T17:18:04-04:00

No, you will be able to set your garbage out just as you normally would. Mail delivery should not be affected.

What is the Right of Way?2021-03-22T17:17:46-04:00

The Right of Way is the grassy area located between the curb and approximately one foot behind the sidewalk. This area is owned by the City. This is where much of the construction will take place, underground.

How soon will I be able to have access to a provider once the conduit is installed?2022-01-19T17:16:37-05:00

It will still be a few months after the City is done with our work before a provider utilizing the conduit network can begin taking sign-ups and scheduling installations.

Will it cost me to have a “drop” or connection to the conduit network installed now that the City is no longer doing these?2022-01-19T17:17:42-05:00

Each internet provider in our conduit network will determine their installation and service charges, so please consult with them to learn more about potential charges for connecting to the conduit network.

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