571 Polson Developments LLC is an urban planning and real estate development company owned and operated by Glenn Lyons and Marilyn Arber. Mr. Lyons and Ms. Arber are also the developers of Iowa’s first cottage housing pocket neighborhood Grinnell Garden Cottages LLC.

Consulting Services Offered

  • Downtown, Business Area and Neighborhood Revitalization Strategies;
  • Site Location, Acquisition, and Diligence;
  • Land Use and Subdivision Planning;
  • Concept Development;
  • Economic Feasibility and Market Analysis;
  • Project Management;
  • Fee Development;
  • Government Grant & Tax Credit Application Writing
  • Community Based Crime Prevention Strategies; and
  • Strategic Planning for Non-Profit Agencies.
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Current and Recent Projects

571 Polson Developments’ primary focus is assisting Iowa’s smaller cities and town to create much needed housing and commercial development. The Company has current contracts in Grinnell, Knoxville and Goldfield.

  • Grinnell

    The Company is assisting Grinnell College with the strategic planning and development of a series of mixed-use residential, commercial and education facilities for several properties the College has acquired in Downtown Grinnell.

  • Knoxville

    The Company has contracted with the Knoxville Economic Development Corporation (KEDC) to assist with the development of an infill subdivision and five single family homes.

  • Knoxville

    The Company is assisting the City of Knoxville in their work with the GSA regarding acquisition and development of the former VA Hospital Campus.

  • Knoxville

    The company has completed a Land Use and Development Strategy for the Veterans Distrct Lands for the City of Knoxville.

  • Bancroft

    The company prepared a development concept and economic feasibility analysis for the conversion of a former school to apartments and is proceeding with the development project.

  • Spirit Lake

    The company prepared a development concept and economic feasibility analysis for the second story conversion of a Downtown commercial building to apartments, and has applied for a state and local development incentives to assist in developing the project.

  • Estherville

    The company is working with the local economic development agency on the renovation of a downtown commercial building, including the conversion of its second story to residential use.

  • Estherville

    The company has completed a Downtown Revitalization Assessment for the City of Estherville.

  • Grundy Center

    The company completed an assessment of a proposal to renovate a former elementary school for continued use as a community service center.

  • Fayette

    In association with McClure Engineering, the Company completed a housing market development study for the City of Fayette and Upper Iowa University.

  • Pella

    The Company conducted an economic feasibility analysis for a private developer and worked with the City of Pella to establish an incentives package for a proposed subdivision project.

  • Humboldt

    The Company prepared a market housing development concept and an economic feasibility analysis for a 33-unit subdivision project on behalf of Humboldt County Housing Development Corporation.

  • Fairfield

    The Company assisted a private developer in negotiating a development agreement with the municipality for a 270unit housing project.

  • Grinnell

    The company assisted Poweshiek Iowa Development in the preparation of two grant applications for a historic renovation and reuse project in Downtown Grinnell.

  • Goldfield

    The Company developed a concept and completed an economic feasibility analysis for the Iowa Rural Development Council involving the rehabilitation of the former Goldfield School and conversion to a mixed use project with apartments and a community center.

Key Staff

Glenn Lyons has nearly forty years urban planning and development experience in Western Canada, Arizona and Iowa. He has Masters Degrees in Environmental Design (Urban & Regional Development) and Business Administration (Finance) from the University of Calgary and is a Member of the Canadian Institute of Planners. Glenn’s experience is wide ranging and includes: urban planning; real estate development; economic development; downtown and business area revitalization, neighborhood revitalization, historic rehabilitation, crime prevention planning, non-profit management and strategic planning, and property tax assessment consulting.

Glenn has worked in all three sectors, having worked for with the Calgary Planning & Building Department, the Calgary Downtown Association, Newell Group, Deloitte & Touché LLP (Canada), Colliers International Realty Advisors, HomeCo, the Downtown Tucson Partnership, the Downtown Community Alliance (Des Moines), and the Neighborhood Development Corporation (Des Moines). He also taught as an Adjunct Professor of Planning at the University of Calgary for fifteen years and was a founding principal in the Real Estate Development Institute in Canada. Glenn has also worked for his own consulting companies in Calgary and Des Moines.

Marilyn Arber brings the benefit of over 40 years work experience in a wide variety of careers in Western Canada, Arizona and Iowa. She worked in the real estate field as paralegal for over 20 years both as an employee and the business owner-operator of Legals’ Etc., a company contracting its services to various attorneys in Alberta. She owned and managed retail stores and a lighting manufacturing enterprise marketing its product in both Canada and the United States.

Between 2003 and 2008, until relocating to the United States Marilyn was the founding President and Executive Director of a non-profit organization, the Community Life Improvement Council, a community based crime prevention association in Calgary, Alberta. In this capacity, she worked with many branches of the Provincial and Federal Government to obtain funding for various crime prevention programs in Calgary.

Since moving to Des Moines, Marilyn has worked in conjunction with Glenn Lyons as owner-operators of Grinnell Garden Cottages, LLC, a land development company currently building 12 single family homes in a pocket community in Grinnell Iowa, and, 571 Polson Developments LLC.

Contact Us

571 Polson Developments LLC
3316 Southern Hills Drive
Des Moines, Iowa 50321

Glenn Lyons
[email protected]

Marilyn Arber
[email protected]