What’s Developing Within Economic Development

The Economic Development Department has been busy working on many projects since our last update. It is this activity, energy, and diversity of activities which makes our department an exciting place to be. Below is a brief overview of the important initiatives Leisa Lukes and I are working on:

  1. NEW ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT WEBSITE: Stay abreast of the latest events, learn about our great City, and find important development facts by visiting and bookmarking The Economic Development Department would like to thank Kevin Lockwood for his proactive approach, creativity, and diligence in diagnosing community and developer needs when designing this site. We welcome additional comments and suggestions at
  2. AGUA CALIENTE DOWNTOWN CATHEDRAL CITY CASINO: On January 18, 2018, the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians shared their site plan for the 12.5 acres of located on the northwest corner of Date Palm Drive and East Palm Canyon. The site plan contemplates a 60,000 total square foot casino consisting of 500 slot machines in 40,000 square feet of gaming space; 5,000 square feet of restaurant space; and 2,500 square feet of retail space. Further, the plan shows an additional 65,000 square feet of mixed-use space for a total under-roof development of 125,000 square feet. Given the Tribe’s success in Palm Springs and Rancho Mirage with two luxury destination-style casino resorts, we know the Tribe will deliver another first-class development!
  3. BOB HOPE CROSSING: The ground-breaking has already begun on this exciting new nine-acre site. It will offer travelers a variety of services including a 90+ room Best Western Plus hotel, AM/PM gas station, Starbucks, McDonalds, Taco Bell and several high-quality quick-serve restaurants.
  4. SUNNIVA: Construction on the Sunniva project is well under way! This $54m project is located on the south side of Ramon Road east of Date Palm Drive and will be approximately 500,000 square feet at build-out. This project will provide 175 to 200 well paying full-time jobs with benefits.
  5. HIRE LOCAL PROGRAM: The Economic Development Department is working closely with the City Council to implement a “Hire Local” program. This program promotes major new businesses to offer all jobs to Cathedral City residents first, before opening the same opportunities to the rest of the Valley. The City and the Council are determined to not only attract new businesses, but ensure our residents are given the first opportunity to land that great new position.
  6. DOWNTOWN CATHEDRAL CITY: Truly exciting things are happening in Downtown Cathedral City. Recent or pending developments within Downtown include: (i) the Agua Caliente casino; (ii) a $2.5m amphitheater located adjacent the parking structure which will be breaking ground within 60 days; (iii) the purchase of the Desert Cinemas theater by CV Repertory is scheduled to close escrow this month. The theater will become home to the future Carol Channing Playhouse with a scheduled opening in the Spring of 2019. I can’t wait!; (iv) The Economic Development Department continues to attract developers interested in creating attractive mixed-use projects located in other areas of the downtown. These projects are anticipated to include retail, lodging, and residential uses.
  7. CVEP, SBA, & CATHEDRAL CITY ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT PARTNERSHIP: The Coachella Valley Economic Partnership (“CVEP”) and the Small Business Administration (“SBA”) have partnered to provide free monthly bilingual workshops on a variety of business and professional development related topics. The first class starts tonight at 6pm at the Palm Springs Motors dealership. Times, dates, and program topics are available on our new Economic Development website ( Be sure to check the City’s economic development website, CVEP’s website (, and SBA’s website ( for other valuable services and resources. Many of these resources are free!

In future communications, we will keep you abreast of new real estate developments, resources, and other opportunities that will improve the City’s quality of life, property values, and economic activity. All Cathedral City residents can help accelerate our economic development by making a commitment to “buy local” whenever possible and encouraging out-of-town guests to stay in one of our several hotels. It makes economic “cents” for you to keep your tax dollars within the City and help fund local community services and programs. Further, there is no better testimonial for attracting future new businesses than to make sure that our existing businesses are prosperous examples for other potentially interested enterprises to follow.

Also, we encourage you to make a special effort to properly maintain your own properties (whether residential or commercial). This shows civic pride in our community. This is another important “selling point” when prospective businesses, commercial real estate agents, and developers tour our City scouting out future business opportunities.

Please share with your friends and contacts the City’s dedicated website which highlights many of our community attributes. As a team, we all play a part in the long-term success of the place in which we love to live, work, play and stay!

Stone James, Director

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