111 East Grand

Situated in the East Village two blocks from the Des Moines River, 111 East Grand is a mixed-use building with retail occupying the ground floor and office space above. The project is anticipated to be completed in the first quarter of 2019 and is funded by the developer team of Tim Rypma, Paul Hayes with JSC Properties, Jake Christensen, and Sloan Cownie at an estimated cost of $14 million. The design team, which includes Raker Rhodes Engineering and Civil Engineering Consultants, has been closely collaborating with StructureCraft from British Columbia as the mass timber engineers and suppliers and Ryan Companies as the construction manager and project contractors.

111 will be the first multi-story office building in North America to employ dowel laminated timber (DLT), a mass timber system relying on friction-fit wood connectors for strength and durability. The system facilitates quick erection time and a smaller site crew, minimizing the disturbance to the neighborhood during construction. Precast walls and buttresses anchor the south portion of the building and assist as the service core.

The wood construction’s refined aesthetics enables the structure to remain exposed as an interior finish. This minimizes tenant improvement work and minimizes chemically impregnated finishes. Operable windows within each structural bay allow natural ventilation. Balconies on the east and west take advantage of downtown views. 

To complement the innovative structural system, Accoya wood panels with a Shou Sugi Ban (charred wood) rain screen assembly clad the east, north and west elevations. Shou Sugi Ban, a technique used in Japan for centuries, provides a carbon patina that protects against UV rays, insects, and rot.  Naturally stained Accoya wood on the soffits and columns complements the Shou Sugi Ban’s dark finish. 

Project Type

In Progress


111 East Grand, LLC


Des Moines, Iowa