Let's pretend you need to pick up some papers at your doctor's office (on one side of town), some items at Target (on a different side of town), and meet friends for coffee
YES! It IS possible to do all this. You see, you might as WELL go do some errands on your way because a) you know you'll have to go through West Des Moines to get downtown anyway (lord knows it would be too convenient to get from Urbandale to Downtown in one shot), and b) because you know you'll have no time to do it later since after your 12:00 coffee, you have another coffee date as far away from Target as you can get. So, you leave your doctor's office in Urbandale at 10:25 and get on to 35 going south towards Kansas City, getting off at Hickman to head to the Target in West Des Moines on the back roads. At Target, you can shop and send 4 texts, pay with debit card, and hold two doors open before getting back onto 235E and making it downtown to Java Joe's. Then, continually re-acclimating yourself with one-way streets, you can pull in with enough time to go in and out of three parking spots, realize you have no change for the meter (thus forcing you to run into Java's to get some before feeding it), and sit to start on a postcard before your friends even arrive.
I can also tell you that you can leave 42nd street and get to 14th (where you cut across 4 lanes to stop for gas, chat with your uncle (what a pleasant and unexpected surprise!) then drive around the one-way-street block 4 times) to park near a school where you're picking up a date for sushi, in only 21 minutes...
Now, for those who, like me, aren't in town on an all-the-time basis, let me offer an important tip I quickly learned this summer - small signs that say 'No right turn on red' are procreating near the freeway exits around town, and should be heeded with caution. If you're like me, you'll not-notice them about 4 times, and will make the mistake of turning right illegally, before searching them out finally becomes a habit to you (and if you're really like me, you'll be ready to leave town once you've finally figured it out!). But, if you DO get pulled over, but happen to be pulled over by a cop who was once stationed on a military base in Japan, he'll not mind so much that you ran the red light, and will instead banter with you a bit about living in the Far East, choosing to send you on your way instead of ticketing you. At least, I am guessing that's what could happen were you to ever find yourself in that situation.