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Ankeny City Hall
Ankeny City Hall
Official seal of Ankeny
"Bringing it all together"
Location in the State of Iowa
Location in the State of Iowa
Ankeny, Iowa is located in the United States
Ankeny, Iowa
Ankeny, Iowa
Location in the United States
Country  United States
State  Iowa
County Polk
Incorporated February 28, 1903
 • Type Mayor-Council-Manager Government
 • Total 30.47 sq mi (78.92 km2)
 • Land 30.47 sq mi (78.92 km2)
 • Water 0.00 sq mi (0.00 km2)
909 ft (277 m)
 • Total 67,887
 • Rank 7th in Iowa
 • Density 2,227.92/sq mi (860.21/km2)
Time zone UTC−6 (CST)
 • Summer (DST) UTC−5 (CDT)
ZIP codes
50023, 50021, 50015
Area code(s) 515
FIPS code 19-02305
GNIS feature ID 0454194
Interstates I-35 (IA 1957).svg I-80 (IA).svg

Ankeny is a city in Polk County, Iowa, United States and a suburb of the state capital of Des Moines, as part of the Des Moines-West Des Moines, IA metropolitan statistical area. As of the 2020 census, the population of Ankeny was 67,887, making it the seventh largest city in the state. It is one of the fastest-growing cities in Iowa. Currently, the city's incorporated area totals 29.14 square miles.

In 2008, Ankeny was recognized as one of the top ten towns for families by Family Circle. In 2009, Ankeny was ranked No. 62 in MONEY Magazine's top 100 places to live list.


Map of the Ankeny area from 1908, showing the railroads and coal mines (red) of the region. Ankeny is in the upper left quadrant.

Ankeny was founded by John and Sarah Ankeny in 1875 and was incorporated on February 28, 1903. A railroad link from Des Moines through Ankeny to Ames was completed in 1874 and passenger service established in 1880.

Coal mining became an important activity in the Ankeny area in the early 20th century. The Anderson Coal Company sank a shaft 2 miles (3 km) southeast of Ankeny in 1908. Enterprise, 4 miles (6 km) east of Ankeny, was the company town of the Enterprise Coal Company, with two large mines opened in 1903 and 1907. In 1914, the Enterprise Coal Company produced over 100,000 tons of coal, ranking among the top 24 coal producers in the state. In 1912, United Mine Workers Local 2476 in Ankeny had 246 members, over half of the total population at the time, and Local 2511 in Enterprise had 395 members.

Ankeny started off as just one square mile, and just 445 people. Electricity was first introduced in 1907. Ankeny's first fire department was established in 1907 and was volunteer-based. They had only three ladders and 14 water pails when the department started.

During World War II Ankeny was home to a federal ordnance plant that manufactured ammunition. After the war, Deere & Company purchased the plant for its Des Moines Works, while Iowa State University used the remainder of the land for its research farm. In June 2005 ISU sold the land to the city of Ankeny, which plans to develop it into a mixed-use development known as "Prairie Trail."


Ankeny Iowa 20080104 Welcome Sign

Ankeny is located at 41°43′36″N 93°36′15″W / 41.72667°N 93.60417°W / 41.72667; -93.60417 (41.726788, −93.604283). It is along Interstate 35 and U.S. Route 69 about 7 miles (11 km) north of downtown Des Moines.

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 29.33 square miles (75.96 km2), all of it land.


Historical population
Census Pop.
1910 445
1920 648 45.6%
1930 632 −2.5%
1940 779 23.3%
1950 1,229 57.8%
1960 2,964 141.2%
1970 9,151 208.7%
1980 15,429 68.6%
1990 18,482 19.8%
2000 27,117 46.7%
2010 45,582 68.1%
U.S. Decennial Census
The population of Ankeny, Iowa from US census data

Since the city's first census results in 1910 of 445 inhabitants, Ankeny's population has grown to an estimated 67,887 people in 2020, an increase of 48% from the 45,562 of the 2010 census, which itself was a 68.1% increase from 2000.

Ankeny has been noted multiple times in recent years by the Census Bureau for rapid population growth, being listed as the fourth fastest growing city July 2016 – 2017 with a growth rate of 6.4% and the tenth fastest growing July 2017 – 2018 with a growth rate of 4.6%. To keep pace with growing population numbers, the city has requested a special census every decade since the 1970s in 1975, 1985, 1994, 2005, and 2014.

High growth rates have led to nearly 80% of Ankeny residents surveyed in 2018 to agree the city's population growth was "somewhat too fast" or "much too fast". The growth has also led to infrastructure strain and challenges.

2010 decennial census

As of the 2010 United States Census, there were 45,582 people, 17,433 households, and 12,087 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,554.1 inhabitants per square mile (600.0/km2). There were 18,339 housing units at an average density of 625.3 per square mile (241.4/km2). The racial makeup of the city was 94.7% White, 1.2% African American, 0.1% Native American, 2.0% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 0.6% from other races, and 1.3% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.3% of the population.

There were 17,433 households, of which 38.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 58.9% were married couples living together, 7.2% had a female householder with no husband present, 3.2% had a male householder with no wife present, and 30.7% were non-families. 22.6% of all households were made up of individuals, and 6.2% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.58 and the average family size was 3.08.

The median age in the city was 31.9 years. 27.7% of residents were under the age of 18; 9.1% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 33.7% were from 25 to 44; 21.1% were from 45 to 64; and 8.3% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 49.0% male and 51.0% female.

Regarding household income, the median income was $51,914 while average income was $70,883. Family income had a median of $62,982 and average of $82,446. Among full-time, year-round workers, the median earnings were $46,478 for men and $36,040 for women. Poverty affecting families was present at a 10.1% general rate with a 28.9% rate of families run by single mothers. Poverty affected 13.8% of inhabitants, 19.2% of minor inhabitants, and 12.1% of those 18 years old and older.

2014 special census

In 2014, a special census was held by decision of the city, which it spent $825 thousand to have. This census was completed on December 12, 2014 and listed a new official population count of 54,598 inhabitants and 21,918 households, an increase of 19.7% and 25.7% respectively to the 2010 decennial census. Increased population numbers allows the city to accrue an estimated $4.5 million more in allocated state funding for road construction and repairs.

2020 decennial census

As of the 2020 United States Census, there were 67,887 people and 24,532 households residing in the city. The racial makeup of the city was 93.4% White, 1.4% African American, 0.1% Native American, 2.3% Asian, 0.6% from other races, and 2.6% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 2.8% of the population.

There were 24,532 households, of which 27.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them. The average household size was 2.61.

Regarding household income, the median household income was $89,484 while per capita income was $41,784. Poverty affected 4.6% of families.


  • Historic Uptown Shopping District
  • Big Creek State Park
  • Saylorville Recreation Area
  • Ankeny Summer Fest
  • Santa's North Pole Village
  • DMACC Kite Festival
  • Ankeny Art in the Park
  • High Trestle Trail
  • Haubert Park


Circle frame-1.svg

Ankeny's economic industry breakdown (2019)      Education and Healthcare Services (23.34%)     Finance, Insurance, and Real Estate (14.07%)     Retail (11.99%)     Professional Services (9.03%)     Entertainment and Recreation (7.81%)     Manufacturing (7.77%)     Construction (5.59%)     Other Services (5.13%)     Public Administration (4.81%)     Transportation, Warehousing, and Utilities (3.71%)

Ankeny Iowa 20080104 Delaware Ave South
Delaware Avenue, a business-heavy thoroughfare

The Ankeny city government's fiscal year 2020 budget listed total property values of $779 million in commercial, $177 million in industrial, $56 million in utilities, $113 million in multi-residential, and $4.64 billion in residential property. The median home value is $197,500. In 2018, the budget reads, Ankeny "saw one of its best years for construction activity" with commercial construction valued $71 million and residential construction valued $173 million. The number of businesses in Ankeny for the year totaled 5,089 with $972 million in taxable retail sales.

The largest businesses by highest taxable valuation are as follows: Deere & Company ($42.6 million), DRA Properties, LC ($36 million), Mid-American Energy ($27.4 million), DLE Seven, LLC ($24 million), Casey's General Stores ($23.3 million), Hurd Fleet, LLC ($21.7 million), Denny Elwell Family, LC ($20.8 million), B&G Foods North America ($19.9 million), Woodland Reserve Apartments, LC ($19.9 million), and Perishable Distributors of Iowa, Ltd. (a Hy-Vee subsidiary) ($17.3 million).

The largest employers by number of employees are as follows: Ankeny Community Schools (1,965), Deere & Company (1,900), Casey's General Stores (1,260), the City of Ankeny (786), Perishable Distributors of Iowa, Ltd. (687), Des Moines Area Community College (611), Baker Group (560), Purfoods (517), B&G Foods North America (400), and Accumold (350).

Industry-wise, the largest percentages of industry occupation are as follows: education and health care services (23.34%), finance, insurance, and real estate (14.07%), retail (11.99%), professional services (9.03%), entertainment and recreation (7.81%), manufacturing (7.77%), construction (5.59%), other services (5.13%), public administration (4.81%), transportation, warehousing, and utilities (3.71%), wholesale (3.68%), agriculture (1.78%), information and data (1.29%).

The United States Census Bureau estimates that between 2013–2017 that 78.7% of the population 16 years old and older were part of the civilian labor force with 73.4% specifically for women.

Previously in 2012, the Census Bureau's Survey of Business Owners (SBO) reported that 4,388 businesses called Ankeny home with a total reported $8.081 billion in business and $748 million in annual payroll. Of those businesses, the reported industries were 619 construction, 143 wholesale, 547 retail, 198 transportation and warehousing, 93 data and information technology, 279 finance and insurance, 491 real estate and rental, 478 professional, scientific, and technical services, and 248 administrative, supportive, waste management, and remediation.


Primary and secondary

Ankeny features both public and private institutions for primary and secondary education.

Ankeny Community School District

See also: Ankeny Community School District

Ankeny's public school district is the sixth largest district of its kind in the state with an approximate $190 million yearly budget. It currently educates nearly 12,000 students and employs over 1,500. It serves most of the city limits. The district encompasses sixteen school buildings and has two feeder systems with corresponding institutions. In 2013, the community school district split into the current two high school system. The district slowly split incoming students into separate systems until the full split was made in 2013. Prior to the split, Ankeny's universal mascot was the Hawk, with the Jaguar being introduced with the new secondary system based around Ankeny Centennial High School.

Other public

A portion of southern Ankeny on the edge of the city limits is in the Saydel Community School District.


Ankeny Christian Academy (a.k.a. ACA) is a private, accredited, and non-denominational Christian school that offers both primary and secondary schooling, as well as preschool. The school was established in February 1992 and opened its doors in August 1993, moving to its current 1604 West 1st Street location in early 2000.

St. Luke the Evangelist Catholic School was opened in August 2015 by the Diocese of Des Moines on the western side of the city at 1102 NW Weigel The initial school and church building had a cost of $8.2 million. Dr. The school initially housed K-3rd grade students. Each year following, a new grade is added until it serves K-8th grade students in 2020. On October 21, 2021 a groundbreaking was held for an expansion with a cost of $3.5 million, with $3.2 million paid through cash and gifts. The area Catholic high school is Dowling Catholic High School in West Des Moines.


Ankeny hosts a variety of public and private post-secondary education institutions.

Des Moines Area Community College (a.k.a. DMACC) has been based in the city since creation of the Ankeny Campus in the summer of 1967. The Campus currently educates over 15,000 students on their 304-acre plot and offers a large variety of degree, diploma, and certificate programs. Since its inception, the college has been undergoing near-constant additions and renovations. Many other campuses exist across the state under the direction of the Ankeny Campus.

Iowa State University formerly operated a research farm in south Ankeny. However, that land was sold off in 2005 and is now being developed as the Prairie Trail district.

Faith Baptist Bible College and Theological Seminary, the oldest private college in Ankeny, has been an institution in the city since 1967. Originally founded as the Omaha Bible Institute in 1921, the college changed names to the Omaha Baptist Bible College in 1960, before moving from Omaha, Nebraska to Ankeny in the summer of 1967. The graduate-level seminary was added in January 1986.

Upper Iowa University, based in Fayette, Iowa, operates an extension facility in the city at 1535 SE Delaware Ave.



The city of Ankeny lists, as of 2018, 543 miles of road, 369 cul-de-sacs, 6,238 street lights, and 72 traffic signals on city roadways.

Ankeny Regional Airport, a public, non-commercial airport, provides air access to Ankeny and has since 1994. The airport currently claims to be the state's third-busiest and allows corporate, individual, and freight use. It is a relief airport for Des Moines International Airport.

Des Moines Area Regional Transit (a.k.a. DART), a public transit agency, operates an express bus route between Ankeny and Des Moines. The route includes stops at DMACC's Ankeny Campus and the High Trestle Trail trailhead in the city. Additionally, the agency operates on-call shuttle services in the city as well.

Notable people

  • Dennis Albaugh (born 1949) Owner, CEO of Albaugh Inc., No. 468 on Forbes 2009 list of World's Billionaires
  • Carmine Boal (born 1956), former Republican Iowa State Representative
  • Chris Fehn (born 1972), musician and member of Slipknot, a Grammy Award-winning heavy metal band
  • Jeff Lamberti (born 1962), former Republican Iowa Senator and State Representative
  • Larry Noble, former Republican Iowa Senator
  • Justin Phongsavanh, F54 Paralympic javelin thrower
  • Paul Rhoads (born 1967), college football coach, head coach at Iowa State University from 2009 to 2015.
  • James Root (born 1971), musician and rhythm/lead guitarist of heavy metal band Slipknot, and the lead guitarist for the rock band Stone Sour
  • Connie Yori (born 1963), former head coach of the Nebraska Cornhuskers women's basketball team
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