Ames, Iowa – Iowa State University has selected Midwest-based Goldenrod Companies to lead the design, development, financing, and construction of CYTown, Iowa State’s innovative 40-acre multi-use district being built between the Iowa State Center and Jack Trice Stadium, school officials announced today.

“Following an extensive RFI (request for information) process led by Cushman & Wakefield, we are thrilled to announce Goldenrod Companies as CYTown’s coordinating developer,” ISU Director of Athletics Jamie Pollard said. “The number of responses to our RFI was truly amazing. It confirmed for us the viability of this project. In the end, Goldenrod’s expertise and demonstrated success in the development of mixed-use districts, coupled with their financial capacity and higher education experience, made them the ideal partner to turn CYTown’s vision into a reality”.

“Our goal is to create a vibrant, innovative, and financially feasible multi-use district that in turn will generate the necessary resources to reinvest in the Iowa State Center,” he added. “CYTown’s unique location will help attract more visitors to Iowa State University and the Ames’ community, spur economic growth for central Iowa, and offer new amenities to students, staff, visitors, and residents to enjoy year-around.”

Iowa State will now enter into an initial agreement that provides Goldenrod an exclusive period to perform the necessary research, facilitate studies, and develop a financial model. After that process is completed, it is expected Iowa State and Goldenrod will enter into a long-term land-use development agreement, pending final approval from the Iowa Board of Regents.

“We are grateful to the Iowa Board of Regents for supporting our recommendation to partner with Goldenrod as the development partner for CYTown. We look forward to working with Goldenrod to develop an innovative and vibrant mixed-use district that will enhance Ames’ reputation as an outstanding community to live and work in,” said ISU President Dr. Wendy Wintersteen. “This has been a thoughtful and deliberate process, and I look forward to the momentum continuing to grow as we enter this exciting phase with Goldenrod coming alongside Iowa State as our partner in this project.”

Headquartered in Omaha, Nebraska, Goldenrod has acquired or successfully developed more than $4.4 billion of commercial real estate throughout the United States since its inception in 2005 and has $2.7 billion in assets under management and manages over 8.5-million square feet of commercial property. It has completed several highly complex projects throughout the Midwest, while developing a niche in the Public-Private-Partnership (P3) sector. Over the last decade, Goldenrod has completed $1.6 billion in P3 projects with 18 different entities.

Goldenrod has served as the master developer for the University of Nebraska’s 2.2-million square foot Innovation Campus, Colorado State University’s South and Foothills Campuses, and developed many projects within Omaha’s transformative Aksarben Village neighborhood. Goldenrod’s current mixed-use projects under construction include The Henry development located adjacent to The Battery in Atlanta, Georgia, as well as both the One University and Van Zandt developments in Fort Worth, Texas.

“Goldenrod is honored to be chosen as the coordinating developer for the CYTown Master Development,” said Zach Wiegert, Goldenrod’s Managing Principal. “We are excited to work with ISU and its stakeholders to make CYTown a truly transformational project for the University and its athletics department.

“After our initial meeting it is evident that ISU has the right team and vision for this development, and we intend to make that vision a reality,” he added. “We want to make CYTown a year-round destination for students, parents, alumni, faculty, staff and visitors while providing an amazing event space before and after ISU athletic events at Iowa State Center and Jack Tice Stadium.”

More than half a century after the first Iowa State Center building opened its doors, the University unveiled its vision for CYTown in September 2022. Since then, momentum has continued to build with the completion of $40M in parking and infrastructure improvements within the CYTown footprint, and the University announced last fall McFarland Clinic would be the development’s first tenant. The proposed McFarland Clinic facility is expected to be completed by the Fall of 2026. The Clinic will be more than 78,000-square feet in size and is estimated to attract nearly 1,000 patients and staff on a daily basis.

“Our team is thrilled that Iowa State had the leadership and foresight to bring the Research Park into this transformational project,” said Rick Sanders, President of Iowa State University Research Park. “This development partnership will positively impact the growth trajectory of the Research Park and provide our university tenant partners a vibrant live, work, play environment that is vital to our growth.

“We are also grateful to our partners at the City of Ames for their cooperation and partnership as we continue to move forward with our partners at Goldenrod,” he added.

In addition to McFarland Clinic, CYTown will provide a unique opportunity for a variety of uses, including retail, food & beverage, entertainment, medical, hospitality, office, and residential.

All-told, the CYTown development will one day encompass over 400,000-square feet of building area that will help serve the 3 million visitors who annually either attend events on site or use the parking lots while utilizing the CYRIDE bus services within the community.


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Businesses and tenants interested in learning more about leasing opportunities should contact Christopher Stafford at Cushman & Wakefield (