Local businesses that surround the Presidents’ Plaza East and West Parking Lots, near El Paseo and Highway 111, are frustrated with the lack in parking. They say its deterred customers even more during this pandemic.
Residents have also voiced their concerns saying there has been little-to-no parking available for months.
The City of Palm Desert is in the process of significant improvements to the Presidents’ Plaza East and West Parking Lots. The improvements include new asphalt pavement, underground utility upgrades, planter areas, modernization of the trash enclosures, new striped parking stalls, and enhanced ADA-compliant pedestrian walkways.
Construction on the lots began in June 1, 2021 and was slated to be complete by January 2022. However, construction has been delayed through at least February.
The city has said the delays began after the contractor unexpectedly encountered 14 previously unknown septic tanks. In addition, the contractor has encountered various existing private utilities in conflict with the planned construction, which must each be adjusted. And due to the supply chain issues, the project team is also working on paving options for the east parking in late December followed by the west parking lot.
The city has provided some solutions for any customers having trouble finding parking:
Typically, two courtesy carts circulate on El Paseo from 11:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. A third cart has been added into the rotation and will focus on the streets around Presidents’ Plaza and within the parking lots themselves. Courtesy carts will pick up patrons at The Gardens on El Paseo at 15-minute intervals and can be dropped off at their desired location. Hours of operation have been expanded to service Presidents’ Plaza from 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Temporary Parking Locations
Signage has been created to encourage patrons to park at the Gardens and to take a courtesy cart shuttle to their destination. City staff is also working on finalizing short-term parking agreements for the use of nearby parking lots (Union Bank at El Paseo and San Luis Rey and U.S. Bank at El Paseo and Portola) that Presidents Plaza businesses can use through the end of January for employee or valet parking.
Tune in at 5pm & 6pm to hear from local business owners and the City of Palm Desert.