DES MOINES – The nonprofit group Greater Des Moines Supportive Housing is working on plans to turn Valley West Inn into a supportive housing campus that will house anywhere from 100 to 150 people.

In a city council meeting last week, West Des Moines awarded Greater Des Moines Supportive Housing $840,000 for the project. Valley West Inn has sat abandoned since a fire last October.

Emily Osweiler, the CEO of Greater Des Moines Supportive Housing said that the metro is in need of more supportive housing complexes.

“I would say that our community was in a housing crisis prior to COVID and COVID has shined a light on it but we haven’t even begun to see the impacts of what that will mean on the housing crisis,” Osweiler said. “So everything that’s even comparable to this has huge waitlists. So there’s a tremendous need. I believe we will build this and it will fill up and we will also have a waiting list.”

The City of West Des Moines also launched affordable housing programs last week. At a press conference, it announced the Historic West Des Moines Housing Fund, which is a public-private partnership that will provide millions of dollars for affordable housing.

There are three programs that the Historic West Des Moines Housing Fund will contribute to.

The first is a Home Improvement Program that will match up to $25,000 for homeowners to repair the exterior of their homes. The next is a Rental Acquisition Program that will help families move from renting homes to owning them. The third is a Down Payment Assistance program for people buying homes.

To learn more about the Historic West Des Moines Housing Fund visit the City of West Des Moines’s website.