Ames, Iowa

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Des Moines
City
Motto: "Smart choice"
Location in the State of Iowa
Location in the State of Iowa
Coordinates: 42°02′05″N 93°37′12″W / 42.03472°N 93.62000°W / 42.03472; -93.62000Coordinates: 42°02′05″N 93°37′12″W / 42.03472°N 93.62000°W / 42.03472; -93.62000
Country United States
State Iowa
County Story
Incorporated 1864
Government
 • Mayor Ann Campbell
Area[1]
 • City 24.27 sq mi (62.86 km2)
 • Land 24.21 sq mi (62.70 km2)
 • Water 0.06 sq mi (0.16 km2)
Elevation 942 ft (287 m)
Population (2010)[3][4]
 • City 58,965
 • Estimate (2012[5]) 60,634
 • Rank 8th in Iowa
 • Density 2,435.6/sq mi (940.4/km2)
 • Urban 60,438[2]
 • Metro 89,542 (estimate based on Story County)
Time zone CST (UTC-6)
 • Summer (DST) CDT (UTC-5)
ZIP code(s)™ 50010, 50011-50013 (UNIQUE ZIP Codes™-for Iowa State University), 50014
GNIS feature ID 0454167
Website http://www.cityofames.org/

Ames is a city located in the central part of the U.S. state of Iowa in Story County. Lying approximately 30 miles (48 km) north of Des Moines, it had a 2010 population of 58,965. The U.S. Census Bureau designates the Ames metropolitan statistical area as encompassing all of Story County; combined with the Boone, Iowa micropolitan statistical area (Boone County, Iowa), the pair make up the larger Ames-Boone combined statistical area. While Ames is the largest city in Story County, the county seat is in the nearby city of Nevada 8 miles (13 km) east of Ames.

Ames is the home of Iowa State University of Science and Technology (ISU), a public research institution with leading Agriculture, Design, Engineering, and Veterinary Medicine colleges. ISU is the nation's first designated land-grant university,[6] and the birthplace of the Atanasoff–Berry Computer, the world's first electronic digital computer.[7] Ames hosts one of two national sites for the United States Department of Agriculture's Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), which comprises the National Veterinary Services Laboratory and the Center for Veterinary Biologics.[8] Ames is also the home of the USDA's Agricultural Research Service's National Animal Disease Center.[9] NADC is the largest federal animal disease center in the U.S., conducting research aimed at solving animal health and food safety problems faced by livestock producers and the public. Ames has the headquarters for the Iowa Department of Transportation.

In 2010, Ames was ranked ninth on CNNMoney.com "Best Places to Live" list.[10]

History[edit]

The city was founded in 1864 as a station stop on the Cedar Rapids and Missouri Railroad and was named after 19th century U.S. Congressman Oakes Ames of Massachusetts, who was influential in the building of the transcontinental railroad. Ames was founded by local resident Cynthia Olive Duff (née Kellogg) and railroad man John Insley Blair,[11] near a location that was deemed favorable for a railroad crossing of the Skunk River.

Geography[edit]

According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 24.27 square miles (62.86 km2), of which 24.21 square miles (62.70 km2) is land and 0.06 square miles (0.16 km2) is water.[1]

Ames is located on Interstate 35, U.S. Route 30 & 69, and the cross country line of the Union Pacific Railroad, located roughly 30 miles (48 km) north of the state capital Des Moines. Two small streams run through the town: the South Skunk River and Squaw Creek.

Neighborhoods[edit]

Ames is made up of several distinct neighborhoods, including Allenview, Bentwood, Bloomington Heights, Broadmoor, Campustown, College Heights, College Park, Colonial Village (Ames's first modern housing development, dating to 1939), Country Gables, Dauntless, Dayton Park, East Hickory Park, Gateway Green Hills, Gateway Hills, Hillside, Iowa State University, Little Hollywood, Main Street Cultural District (Downtown Ames), Melrose Park, Northridge Heights, Northridge Parkway, Old Town Historic Preservation District, Ontario Heights, Parkview Heights, Ridgewood, Ringgenberg Park, Suncrest, Somerset, South Fork, South Gateway, Spring Valley, Stone Brooke, Sunset Ridge, and West Ames.[citation needed]

Campustown[edit]

Leedzsalon in Campustown
Café Beaudelaire in Campustown

Campustown is the neighborhood directly south of Iowa State University Central Campus bordered by Lincoln Way on the north. Campustown is a high-density mixed-use neighborhood that is home to many student apartments, nightlife venues, restaurants, and numerous other establishments, most of which are unique to Ames.

Climate[edit]

Ames has a humid continental climate (Köppen climate classification Dfa). On average, the warmest month is July and the coldest is January. The highest recorded temperature was 102 °F (39 °C) in 1988 and the lowest was −28 °F in 1996.[12]

Climate data for Ames, Iowa
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °F (°C) 67
(19)
67
(19)
90
(32)
97
(36)
100
(38)
101
(38)
101
(38)
102
(39)
98
(37)
95
(35)
80
(27)
66
(19)
102
(39)
Average high °F (°C) 30
(−1)
35
(2)
48
(9)
63
(17)
73
(23)
82
(28)
84
(29)
83
(28)
77
(25)
64
(18)
47
(8)
32
(0)
59.8
(15.5)
Average low °F (°C) 12
(−11)
17
(−8)
28
(−2)
39
(4)
50
(10)
60
(16)
64
(18)
62
(17)
53
(12)
41
(5)
28
(−2)
15
(−9)
39.1
(4.2)
Record low °F (°C) −26
(−32)
−28
(−33)
−11
(−24)
8
(−13)
27
(−3)
38
(3)
44
(7)
40
(4)
29
(−2)
13
(−11)
−7
(−22)
−24
(−31)
−28
(−33)
Precipitation inches (mm) .74
(18.8)
.86
(21.8)
2.05
(52.1)
3.50
(88.9)
4.35
(110.5)
5.01
(127.3)
4.43
(112.5)
4.33
(110)
3.09
(78.5)
2.67
(67.8)
1.98
(50.3)
1.06
(26.9)
34.07
(865.4)
Source: Weather Channel[13]

Demographics[edit]

Historical populations
Year Pop.   ±%  
1870 636 —    
1880 1,153 +81.3%
1890 1,276 +10.7%
1900 2,422 +89.8%
1910 4,223 +74.4%
1920 6,270 +48.5%
1930 10,261 +63.7%
1940 12,555 +22.4%
1950 22,898 +82.4%
1960 27,003 +17.9%
1970 39,505 +46.3%
1980 45,775 +15.9%
1990 47,198 +3.1%
2000 50,731 +7.5%
2010 58,965 +16.2%
Source:"American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau.  and Iowa Data Center

2010 census[edit]

As of the census[3] of 2010, there were 58,965 people, 22,759 households, and 9,959 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,435.6 inhabitants per square mile (940.4 /km2). There were 23,876 housing units at an average density of 986.2 per square mile (380.8 /km2). The racial makeup of the city was 84.5% White, 3.4% African American, 0.2% Native American, 8.8% Asian, 1.1% from other races, and 2.0% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 3.4% of the population.

There were 22,759 households of which 19.1% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 35.6% were married couples living together, 5.4% had a female householder with no husband present, 2.7% had a male householder with no wife present, and 56.2% were non-families. 30.5% 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 2.25 and the average family size was 2.82.

The median age in the city was 23.8 years. 13.4% of residents were under the age of 18; 40.5% were between the ages of 18 and 24; 22.9% were from 25 to 44; 15% were from 45 to 64; and 8.1% were 65 years of age or older. The gender makeup of the city was 53.0% male and 47.0% female.

2000 census[edit]

As of the census of 2000,[14] there were 50,731 people, 18,085 households, and 8,970 families residing in the city. The population density was 2,352.3 people per square mile (908.1/km²). There were 18,757 housing units at an average density of 869.7 per square mile (335.7/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 87.34% White, 7.70% Asian, 2.65% African American, 0.04% American Indian, 0.76% Pacific Islander and other races, and 1.36% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 1.98% of the population.

There were 18,085 households out of which 22.3% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 42.0% were married couples living together, 5.3% had a female householder with no husband present, and 50.4% were non-families. 28.5% of all households were made up of individuals and 5.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.30 and the average family size was 2.85.

Age spread: 14.6% under the age of 18, 40.0% from 18 to 24, 23.7% from 25 to 44, 13.9% from 45 to 64, and 7.7% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 24 years. For every 100 females there were 109.3 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 109.9 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $36,042, and the median income for a family was $56,439. Males had a median income of $37,877 versus $28,198 for females. The per capita income for the city was $18,881. About 7.6% of families and 20.4% of the population were below the poverty line, including 9.2% of those under age 18 and 4.1% of those age 65 or over.

Metropolitan area[edit]

Location of the Ames-Boone CSA and its components:
  Ames Metropolitan Statistical Area
  Boone Micropolitan Statistical Area

Ames is the larger principal city of the Ames–Boone CSA, a Combined Statistical Area that includes the Ames metropolitan area (Story County) and the Boone micropolitan area (Boone County),[15][16][17] which had a combined population of 106,205 at the 2000 census.[14]

Economy[edit]

Ames is home of Iowa State University of Science and Technology, a public land-grant and space-grant research university, and member of the prestigious Association of American Universities. At its founding in 1858, Iowa State was formerly known as the Iowa State College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts. Ames is the home of the closely allied U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Animal Disease Center (See Ames strain), the U.S. Department of Energy's Ames Laboratory (a major materials research and development facility), and the main offices of the Iowa Department of Transportation. State and Federal institutions are the largest employers in Ames.

Other area employers include a 3M manufacturing plant; Sauer-Danfoss, a hydraulics manufacturer; Barilla, a pasta manufacturer; Ball, a manufacturer of canning jars and plastic bottles; and the National Farmers Organization.

Top employers[edit]

According to Ames's 2011 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report,[18] the top employers in the city are:

# Employer # of Employees
1 Iowa State University 14,020
2 Mary Greeley Medical Center 1,347
3 Iowa Department of Transportation 1,012
4 McFarland Clinic 886
5 City of Ames 857
6 Hy-Vee 738
7 Sauer-Danfoss 650
8 Ames Community School District 622
9 Ames Laboratory 477
10 3M 430

Arts and culture[edit]

Velma Wallace Rayness Ames, Iowa was home to Gerard M. and Velma Wallace Rayness. Both artists taught art and were nationally recognized artists. Their art was exhibited nationally as well as abroad. Gerard died in the 1940s. Velma Wallace Rayness died in 1977. Velma Wallace Rayness usually signed her paintings "V.W. Rayness"

Ames Historical Society
Collects, preserves, and provides access to evidence of the history of Ames and its immediate vicinity from pre-settlement times to the present[19]
Hayward Hostel
Longtime drinking establishment for generations of Iowa State students and Alumni. Currently, under new management and improvements have been made to the basement section to facilitate a larger number of residents.
Brunnier Art Museum (Scheman Building)
Ames Public Library
The Ames Public Library is a Carnegie library[20] founded on October 20, 1904.[21] It currently has 1,386,273 items in circulations, including 799,349 books, and 586,924 multimedia items.[22]
The Octagon Center for the Arts
The Center includes galleries, art classes, art studios, and retail shop. They sponsor the local street fair, The Octagon Arts Festival. Also have the Annual National Juried Exhibition Clay, Fiber, Paper Glass Metal, Wood.[23]
The Space for Ames
Formally known as the Ames Progressive, The Space for Ames is a community space that serves as an art gallery, music venue and classroom for community workshops.[24]

Popular culture[edit]

  • The city is featured in the bestselling book The Girls from Ames written by Wall Street Journal columnist Jeffrey Zaslow. It examines the lives and friendships of several young girls who grew up in Ames and have moved on with their adult lives but still remain close.
  • The city was featured in the episode "Heartache" of the television show Supernatural.

Sports[edit]

Iowa Sports Foundation.

The Iowa State University Cyclones play a variety of sports in the Ames area. The Cyclones' football team plays at Jack Trice Stadium near Ames. Also, the Cyclones' Men's and Women's Basketball teams and Volleyball team play at Hilton Coliseum just across the street from Jack Trice Stadium. The Iowa State Cyclones are a charter member of the Big 12 Conference in all sports and compete in NCAA Division I-A.

The Ames Figure Skating Club provides recreational to professional level skating opportunities. The club sponsors the Learn to Skate Program. Coaches provide on and off ice lessons or workshops. The club hosts the figure skating portion of the Iowa Games competition every summer. In the fall the club hosts Cyclone Country Championships. Every year the club puts on the Winter Gala. The big event is the annual Spring Ice Show where young to adult skaters can perform their best moves.

Parks and recreation[edit]

The Ames area has a large number of parks and arboretums.

Specialized Parks:

  • Ada Hayden Heritage Park
  • Ames Dog Park
  • Bandshell Park
  • Charles & June Calhoun Park
  • Daley Park & Greenbelt
  • Furman Aquatic Center
  • Gateway Park
  • Greenbriar Park
  • Homewood Golf Course
  • Skate Park
  • Squaw Creek (Community Gardens)

Community Parks:

  • Brookside Park
  • Daley Park & Greenbelt
  • Emma McCarthy Lee Park
  • Inis Grove Park
  • Moore Memorial Park
  • River Valley Park

Neighborhood Parks:

  • Bandshell Park
  • Christofferson Park
  • Duff Park
  • Franklin Park
  • Hutchison Park
  • Lloyd Kurtz Park
  • Moore Park (On Beach Ave)
  • Old Town Park
  • O'Neil Park
  • Parkview Park
  • Patio Homes West Park
  • Stuart Smith Park
  • Teagarden Park

Education[edit]

Public high school in Ames

Ames High School: Grades 9–12

Public elementary/middle schools in Ames
  • David Edwards Elementary: K-5
  • Abbie Sawyer Elementary School: Grades K-5
  • Kate Mitchell Elementary School: Grades K-5
  • Warren H. Meeker Elementary School: Grades K-5
  • Gertrude Fellows Elementary School: Grades K-5
  • Ames Middle School: Grades 6–8
Private schools in Ames

Iowa State University[edit]

Iowa State University of Science and Technology, more commonly known as Iowa State University (ISU), is a public land-grant and space-grant research university located in Ames. Iowa State has produced a number of astronauts, scientists, Nobel laureates, Pulitzer Prize winners, and a variety of other notable individuals in their respective fields.[citation needed] Until 1945 it was known as the Iowa State College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts. The university is a member of the American Association of Universities and the Big 12 Conference.

In 1856, the Iowa General Assembly enacted legislation to establish the State Agricultural College and Model Farm. Story County was chosen as the location on June 21, 1859, from proposals by Johnson, Kossuth, Marshall, Polk, and Story counties. When Iowa accepted the provisions of the Morrill Act of 1862, Iowa State became the first institution in nation designated as a land-grant college. The institution was coeducational from the first preparatory class admitted in 1868. The formal admitting of students began the following year, and the first graduating class of 1872 consisted of 24 men and 2 women.[6]

The first building on the Iowa State campus was Farm House. Built in the 1860s, it currently serves as a museum and National Historic Landmark. Today, Iowa State has over 60 notable buildings, including Beardshear Hall, Morrill Hall, Memorial Union, Catt Hall, Curtiss Hall, Carver Hall, Parks Library, the Campanile, Hilton Coliseum, C.Y. Stephens Auditorium, Fisher Theater, Jack Trice Stadium, Lied Recreation Center, numerous residence halls, and many buildings specific to ISU's many different majors and colleges. Iowa State is home to 28,080 students (Spring 2012)[25] and makes up approximately one half of the city's population.

The official mascot for ISU is Cy the Cardinal. The official school colors are cardinal and gold. The Iowa State Cyclones play in the NCAA's Division I-A as a member of the Big 12 Conference.

Media[edit]

Online and newsprint
Radio

Infrastructure[edit]

Transportation[edit]

City power plant at night blows steam into the air.

The town is served by U.S. Highways 30 and 69 and Interstate 35. Ames is the only town in Iowa with a population of greater than 50,000 that does not have a state highway serving it.

Ames was serviced by the Fort Dodge, Des Moines and Southern Railroad via a branch from Kelley to Iowa State University and to downtown Ames. The tracks were removed in the 1960s. The Chicago and North Western Transportation Company twin mainline runs east and west bisecting the town and running just south of the downtown business district. The C&NW used to operate a branch to Des Moines. This line was removed in the 1980s when the Spine Line through Nevada was purchased from the Rock Island Railroad after its bankruptcy. The Union Pacific, successor to the C&NW, still runs 60–70 trains a day through Ames on twin mainlines, which leads to some traffic delays. There is also a branch to Eagle Grove that leaves Ames to the north. The Union Pacific maintains a small yard called Ames Yard east of Ames between Ames and Nevada. Ames has been testing automatic train horns at several of its crossings. These directional horns which are focused down the streets are activated when the crossing signals turn on and are shut off after the train crosses the crossing. This system cancels out the need for the trains to blow their horns. Train noise had been a problem in the residential areas to the west and northwest of downtown.

Ames has a municipal airport located 1-mile (1.6 km) southeast of the city. The current (and only) FBO is Hap's Air Service, a company which has been based at the airport since 1975. The airport has two runways – 01/19, which is 5,700 by 100 feet (1,737 m × 30 m), and 13/31, which is 3,492 by 100 feet (1,064 m × 30 m).

The City of Ames offers a transit system throughout town, called CyRide, that is funded jointly by Iowa State University, the ISU Government of the Student Body, and the City of Ames. Rider fares are subsidized through this funding, and are free for children under five. Students pay a set cost as part of their tuition.

Ames has the headquarters of the Iowa Department of Transportation.[26]

Health care[edit]

Ames is served by Mary Greeley Medical Center, a 220-bed regional referral hospital which is adjacent to McFarland Clinic PC, central Iowa's largest physician-owned multi-specialty clinic, and also Iowa Heart Center.

Notable people[edit]

Other topics[edit]

Politics[edit]

Iowa is a "battleground state" that has trended slightly Democratic in recent years, and Ames, like Iowa City, also trends Democratic. Because Iowa is the first caucus state and Ames is a college town, it is the site of many political appearances, debates and events, especially during election years.

During every August in which the Republican presidential nomination is undecided (meaning there is no incumbent Republican president—as in, most recently, 2011, 2007, 1999, 1995 and 1987), the town plays host to the Ames Straw Poll, which gauges support for the various Republican candidates amongst attendees of a fundraising dinner benefiting the Iowa Republican Party. The straw poll dates back to 1979, and is frequently seen as a first test of organizational strength in Iowa by the national media and party insiders; as such, it can be very beneficial for a candidate to win the straw poll and thus enhance the candidate's aura of inevitability or show off a superior field operation.[29]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "US Gazetteer files 2010". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved May 11, 2012. 
  2. ^ 2010 Census Urban Area List
  3. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved May 11, 2012. 
  4. ^ United States Census Bureau. "Cumulative Estimates of Population Change for Metropolitan Statistical Areas and Rankings: April 1, 2000 to July 1, 2008". Retrieved July 1, 2009. 
  5. ^ "Population Estimates". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved May 23, 2013. 
  6. ^ a b Iowa State University Time Line, 1858–1874. Iowa State University Website.
  7. ^ The First Electronic Computer by Arthur W. Burks
  8. ^ "USDA – Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) – Animal Health – Veterinary Services". Aphis.usda.gov. August 13, 2009. Retrieved September 19, 2011. 
  9. ^ "National Animal Disease Center : Home". Ars.usda.gov. Retrieved September 19, 2011. 
  10. ^ "Best Places to Live 2010". CNN. 
  11. ^ "Ames Origin". Ames Historical Society. Retrieved Mar 21, 2014. 
  12. ^ http://www.weather.com/outlook/health/achesandpains/wxclimatology/monthly/USIA0026
  13. ^ Average weather for Ames Weather Channel Retrieved April 8, 2008
  14. ^ a b "American FactFinder". United States Census Bureau. Retrieved 2008-01-31. 
  15. ^ Metropolitan Statistical Areas and Components, Office of Management and Budget, May 11, 2007. Accessed August 1, 2008.
  16. ^ Micropolitan Statistical Areas and Compontents, Office of Management and Budget, May 11, 2007. Accessed August 1, 2008.
  17. ^ Combined Statistical Areas and Component Core Based Statistical Areas, Office of Management and Budget, May 11, 2007. Accessed August 1, 2008.
  18. ^ City of Ames CAFR
  19. ^ Ames Historical Society. "AHS website". Retrieved May 29, 2012. 
  20. ^ University of Iowa (2010). "Home – Carnegie Libraries in Iowa Project". Retrieved December 18, 2010. 
  21. ^ Ames Public Library. "History of APL". Archived from the original on December 12, 2010. Retrieved December 18, 2010. 
  22. ^ Ames Public Library (2009). "Facts & Figures". Archived from the original on December 5, 2010. Retrieved December 18, 2010. 
  23. ^ "Art Matters". Octagon Center for the Arts. Retrieved June 17, 2011. 
  24. ^ "Events". Ames Progressive. Retrieved May 11, 2011. 
  25. ^ "FINAL ENROLLMENT – SPRING 2012". ISU Registrar's Office. Retrieved March 26, 2012. 
  26. ^ "Where We Are Located." Iowa Department of Transportation. Retrieved October 25, 2009.
  27. ^ Atanasoff-Berry Computer
  28. ^ "Gerard and Velma Rayness Papers, 1861–1979, undated". Iowa State University. Retrieved September 15, 2011. 
  29. ^ "Iowa Saturday". CNN. August 14, 1999. 

External links[edit]