Many insurance companies have their headquarters there.
The capitol building is one of only a few U.S. state capitol buildings with a genuine gold-plated dome.
The major interstates going to Des Moines are I-35 and I-80.
Its downtown has a 5 km long skywalk system.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 200.1 km² (77.2 mi²). 196.3 km² (75.8 mi²) of it is land and 3.8 km² (1.5 mi²) of it is water. The total area is 1.88% water.
Demographics As of the census2 of 2000, there are 198,682 people, 80,504 households, and 48,704 families residing in the city. The population density is 1,012.0/km² (2,621.3/mi²). There are 85,067 housing units at an average density of 433.3/km² (1,122.3/mi²). The racial makeup of the city is 82.29% White, 8.07% African American, 0.35% Native American, 3.50% Asian, 0.05% Pacific Islander, 3.52% from other races, and 2.23% from two or more races. 6.61% of the population are Hispanic or Latino of any race.
There are 80,504 households out of which 29.5% have children under the age of 18 living with them, 43.7% are married couples living together, 12.6% have a female householder with no husband present, and 39.5% are non-families. 31.9% of all households are made up of individuals and 10.2% have someone living alone who is 65 years of age or older. The average household size is 2.39 and the average family size is 3.04.
In the city the population is spread out with 24.8% under the age of 18, 10.6% from 18 to 24, 31.8% from 25 to 44, 20.4% from 45 to 64, and 12.4% who are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 34 years. For every 100 females there are 93.8 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there are 90.5 males.
The median income for a household in the city is $38,408, and the median income for a family is $46,590. Males have a median income of $31,712 versus $25,832 for females. The per capita income for the city is $19,467. 11.4% of the population and 7.9% of families are below the poverty line. Out of the total people living in poverty, 14.9% are under the age of 18 and 7.6% are 65 or older.
3D map: http://www.downtowndsm.info/pdfs/downtown_map.pdf (also showing skywalks, in blue)