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June 15, 2017

Community Update by John A. Corella, P.E.
City Engineer

Cathedral City leads the way in providing outdoor facilities that encourage active forms of mobility in the Coachella Valley.  Our constituents are literally on the move and continue to request more walking and bicycling modes.  The City Council and staff are committed to providing more facilities as the funding becomes available.  The City’s Engineering Department has been focusing on both stand-alone active transportation projects via grants as well as incorporating new and/or upgraded active transportation facilities within the current and planned roadway rehabilitations and expansions.   

One of the stand-alone Active Transportation Projects currently underway is The Cathedral City Whitewater Bike Path Project.   This $3.5 million project consists of an 8-inch concrete path along approximately 2.2 miles of the west bank of the Whitewater River between Vista Chino and Ramon Road in both the cities of Cathedral City and Palm Springs.  The pedestrian, bicycle and neighborhood electric vehicle (NEV) friendly path will be of varying widths up to 14 feet.  The Project includes concrete retaining walls, decomposed granite landscape improvements, water fountains, solar pathway lights and shaded benches at each end of the path.  When completed the Project will feature an impressive seeded glass concrete design, themed directional signage and with architecturally designed shade structures.  All these features and amenities will provide the user with an aesthetically pleasing experience as the Project was designed to seamlessly incorporate into the upcoming valley-wide CV Link Project.

Funding for this $3.5 million Bike Path is being provided by two State Bicycle Transportation Grants awarded to the City in 2008 and 2009 and Air Quality Mitigation Grants provided through he Coachella Valley Association of Governments (CVAG).  The City worked with several agencies and private parties to make this Project happen including:  Riverside County Flood Control District, the Coachella Valley Water District, Desert Water Agency, the City of Palm Springs, Escena Homeowners Association and Warrior Golf Equities.  This Project is scheduled to be completed this fall and will be the first of its kind to incorporate pedestrians, bicyclists, and low speed-electric vehicles in one Project.

In the continuing effort to enhance active transportation opportunities within the City, the $3.5 million Vista Chino Street Improvement Project has been completed and is now open to all vehicular traffic, pedestrian and bicycling traffic. The entire two-mile stretch of Vista Chino between Date Palm Drive to the end of the City limits at the east bank of the Whitewater River Channel was reconstructed to include a new road with a rubber cap, sidewalks where needed, replacement of curb and gutter at various locations to improve drainage, new signage and updated ADA curb ramps.  One of the final steps in the Project was to apply new striping along the length of the roadway, which included widened bicycle lanes in each direction that will conveniently link to the new Cathedral City Whitewater Bike Path above.

Funding from the Vista Chino Project was secured from Gas Tax Funds, adjacent Assessment District funds and a $1.0 million contribution from the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians.

On the other end of the City at the Date Palm Drive Bridge and over the Whitewater Channel, you will notice construction activity starting to progress.  The City has contracted with Riverside Construction Co., Inc. to complete the Date Palm Bridge Over Whitewater River Project.  This approximately $19 million construction project will widen and improve the existing bridge and roadway to three lanes in each direction on Date Palm Drive between Gerald Ford Drive and Perez Road.  This Project will feature expanding the current bridge deck, seismically improving the existing bridge, improving the channel wall lining, armoring the channel bottom, add retaining walls, new medians, traffic signal upgrades at Perez Road and Date Palm Drive and provide drainage improvements.  Funding for the project entails $16.35 million from the federal government, $1.64 million from CVAG, and $548,000 from Cathedral City.   

Additionally, active transportation features will be included in Project.  New sidewalks will be incorporated on each side of the bridge and along the roadway to each of the Project limits, new LED lighted decorative bridge railings will be installed, new ADA ramps, bicycle lanes will be provided in each direction and undercrossing accommodations for the future CV Link Project segment in this area. 

This Project is funded by City Capital Improvement Program funds, Coachella Valley Association of Governments Transportation Program funding and Federal Highway Bridge Program funding.  The Project is scheduled to be completed in 18 months.

Pedestrian and bicycle safety are also at the forefront of the City’s projects.  The City was awarded a Federal Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP) Grant of $1.67 million to improve vehicle safely, pedestrian safety and bicycle safety at 20 intersections throughout the City.  This 100% grant funding will provide for upgraded traffic signal equipment, count down timers for pedestrians and enhanced bicycle recognition at grant designated intersections. A Request for Proposal for the design work for this project will be received this upcoming week. 

Other projects that the City Staff is working on that will provide active transportation opportunities include the Cathedral Canyon Bridge Project over the Whitewater River.  This approximately $22 million project will include a new bridge over the Whitewater River where a low water crossing exists today.  This project will include sidewalk and bicycle lanes in each direction as well as roadway widening improvements.  Funding for the bridge project involves $19.5 million from the federal government, $1.9 million from CVAG, and $632,000 from Cathedral City. 

The Ramon Road Bridge Project over the Whitewater River is also under design, with the City of Palm Springs as the lead agency.  This $36 million Project will not only widen the existing bridge and roadway from San Luis Rey to Candlewood Drive, it will also provide the next link of connectivity for the Cathedral City Whitewater Bike Path.  The bridge deck will include a sidewalk on the north side and a multiuse path on the south side, as well as providing connectivity to the CV Link path that will continue south along the Whitewater River bank in the future.  This Project will start in the Fall of 2018.   Funding for the bridge project includes $25 million from the federal government, $8 million from CVAG, $1 million from the City of Palm Springs and $1.6 million from Cathedral City. 

The City is also anticipating approval of two grant submittals at the end of this month that directly relate to active transportation safety.  Seven applications were submitted to CVAG under their request for projects to be included in the CVAG Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety Program.  Two out of the seven City’s submitted projects have been selected for final approval.  One of these proposed projects will provide for installation of sidewalks along Date Palm Drive where sidewalks do not exist.  The other proposed project will fund a signalized mid-block Pedestrian Crossing at Dinah Shore Drive and Vaquero Road significantly enhancing the pedestrian safety for students attending Cathedral City High School.

The City’s Engineering Staff is continually looking for new opportunities to improve our roadway, drainage, traffic and active transportation infrastructure within the City.  We continually look for available funding opportunities and have been very successful in securing new grant awards.  We know traffic may be slowed down during the times we are constructing these projects, but in the end, our City will have something to be proud of for generations to come.  The Engineering Department appreciates your roadway patience as a driver, walker, or bike rider when construction crews are working hard to improve our City.

News

CCHS DATA Students Receive Awards in Photography and Video at the Fourth Annual DATA Awards Ceremony

CCHS DATA Students Receive Awards in Photography and Video at the Fourth Annual DATA Awards Ceremony

Six Cathedral City High School students received cash awards from the Cathedral City Public Arts Commission for their outstanding work in photography and videos at the Fourth Annual DATA Awards Ceremony that was held at the Mary Pickford Theater on May 25, 2017. Winners … Read more.

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Cooling Centers Open for Forecasted Heat Wave

Cooling Centers Open for Forecasted Heat Wave

The National Weather Service in San Diego has issued an Excessive Heat Warning for the Coachella Valley starting on Friday, June 16, 2017 at 11:00 am thru at least Wednesday, June 21, 2017. Temperatures are predicted to range from 110 degrees to 120 degrees. Residents should take precautions during their time outdoors by … Read more.

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THE FOUNTAIN OF LIFE IN DOWNTOWN CATHEDRAL CITY IS NOW OPEN

The Fountain of Life in Downtown Cathedral City Is Now Open

After several weeks of repairs and scheduled maintenance, the Fountain of Life in Downtown Cathedral City and in front of City Hall is now open. This interactive water feature is a summer hit for the children who love to splash play. Already, children have gravitated to this world-renowned fountain … Read more.

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Mayor Pro Tem Greg Pettis' Video Council Report for June 14, 2017

Mayor Pro Tem Greg Pettis' Video Council Report for June 14, 2017

Mayor Pro Tem Greg Pettis discusses a recent trip to Cathedral City's Sister City (Tequila, Jalisco, Mexico) and his service on several boards including CALCOG and the National League of Cities to benefit the residents here in Cathedral City. To view the latest video, click the following link: … Read more.

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Cathedral City’s “Zobö & Meester’s” Restaurant Will Be Featured on the Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” – This Friday

Cathedral City’s “Zobö & Meester’s” Restaurant Will Be Featured on the Food Network’s “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” – Today

This past March, the Food Network scoured the Coachella Valley searching for a few great restaurants to be featured on its “Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives” hosted by Celebrity Chef Guy Fieri. Cathedral City’s very own local restaurant, “Zobö & Meester’s” … Read more.

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Electoral Draft and Public Maps Are Now Available Online

Electoral Draft and Public Maps Are Now Available Online

During the process of Cathedral City moving from "at-large" elections for its city council to “by-districts” elections beginning in November 2018, the Council retained National Demographics Corporation and requested public input in order to establish and draw electoral districts. The Draft Maps and Public Maps are now available for review at …

Read more.

Upcoming Events

Free Kids Summer Film Series

Free Kids Summer Film Series

The Cathedral City Parks and Community Events Commission in partnership with the Mary Pickford Theatre presents a Free Summer Kids Film Series happening on every Friday at 9:30 a.m. starting Friday, June 16, 2017 thru Friday, August 18, 2017.  Thanks to a generous donation by Councilmember John Aguilar, the film series will allow free admission in order to see a different kids movie each Friday morning at the Mary Pickford Theatre in Downtown Cathedral City.

Read more.

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Summer Reading Program & Activities - Cathedral City Library

Summer Reading Program & Activities - Cathedral City Library

Come into the library to sign up for its Summer Reading Program on Wednesday June 7th!  This year is all about Science, Art and Design, with the nationwide theme titled: “Reading By Design!” The kick-off party will start June 7th at 6pm with a soda making class for all ages!  They will have special ... Read more.

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Cathedral City Cove Art Party for Children & Elders

Cathedral City Cove Art Party for Children & Elders

Children's Art Party for children and elders. The SCRAP Gallery and the Agnes Pelton Society hosts the Children and Elders monthly Art Party at the Cathedral City Art Gallery, 68895 Perez Road, Suite I-27 (across from Frankie's Italian Bakery) on the Second Saturday of each month from 1-3 PM.   Admission is free. Participants create art pieces made of recyclable materials … Read more.

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2nd Saturdays Art Walk on Perez Road

2nd Saturdays Art Walk on Perez Road

Every 2nd Saturday, come to Cathedral City’s Art & Design District for “2nd Saturdays Art Walk on Perez Road” where you will discover special art exhibits, museum quality art as well as cultural art to brighten your soul, meet other like-minded people, and maybe get a little exercise going from art gallery to design gallery to art gallery.  It will be ARTtastic!

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City Hall at Your Corner - Special Meeting

City Hall at Your Corner - Special Meeting

Have an issue you would like to speak to your city councilmembers about or learn what is happening in Cathedral City? Then join us for “City Hall at Your Corner” hosted by two members of the City Council, Mayor Pro Tem Greg Pettis and Councilmember Shelley Kaplan.

This “City Hall at Your Corner” will also serve as a Special Discussion on Electoral Districts as the City transitions from “at-large” to “by-district” elections for members of the City Council starting with the November 2018 general election...

Read more.

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A Summer ESkate at Desert Ice Castle

A Summer ESkate at Desert Ice Castle

Tired of the dog days of summer?  The City of Cathedral City wants you to cool down for a Free Summer ESkate at Desert Ice Castle on Thursday, July 20, 2017 from 7 pm to 9 pm.  ESkate allows up to 175 people to ice skate for free including skate rental. ... Read more.

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City Hall at Your Corner - Special Meeting

City Hall at Your Corner - Special Meeting

Have an issue you would like to speak to your city councilmembers about or learn what is happening in Cathedral City? Then join us for “City Hall at Your Corner” hosted by two members of the City Council, Councilmembers John Aguilar and Mark Carnevale.

This “City Hall at Your Corner” will also serve as a Special Discussion on Electoral Districts as the City transitions from “at-large” to “by-district” elections for members of the City Council starting with the November 2018 general election..

Read more.

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Tejano Music Fest

Tejano Music Fest

Come enjoy the Tejano Music Fest on Saturday, September 16th from 3 pm to 11 pm in Downtown Cathedral City.  The event includes musical acts, Tejano food, beverages for all, and Tejano art.  Read more.

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Desert Glo Fest

Desert Glo Fest

Desert Glo Fest is the newly revamped event formely known as Health Glo,  at Health Glo 2015 & 2016 runners/walkers danced, jumped and sang along at our DJ spun Pre-Party while the paint flew.  After enjoying the non-stop party our participants ran or walked through our 5k black light lit glow course where they were doused with even more paint and glowed the night away…..Read more.

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Halloween Spooktacular

Halloween Spooktacular

The Cathedral City Police Department, Cathedral City Fire Department, City of Cathedral City’s Special Events and many non-profit organizations bring to you the Halloween Spooktacular, Sunday, October 29, 2017 from 1-3 pm. The event will occur in downtown in front of City Hall, 68-700 Avenida Lalo Guerrero.  Halloween Spooktacular will include free admission as well as exhibits sponsored by non-profit organizations, the Cathedral City Police Department and Cathedral City Fire Department.

Families are encouraged...  Read more.

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Healing Field

Healing Field

"Healing Field" is a tribute to the men and women of uniform who gave the ultimate sacrifice to our country since September 2001.  The event is organized by the Cathedral City Rotary and sponsored by the City of Cathedral City. Located in Patriot Park next to Big League Dreams Sports Park at the corner of Date Palm Drive and Dinah …

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Cathedral City Hot Air Balloon Festival

Cathedral City Hot Air Balloon Festival

Cathedral City Hot Air Balloon Festival 2017

Read more.

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Snow Fest - Globe

Snow Fest

Bring the entire family for this brand new event that shall become a tradition for Cathedral City!  Snow Fest captures all the holiday spirit and places it at one event.  You will enjoy an outdoor market featuring holiday arts & crafts, food, treats, and beverages including hot chocolate.  At 5:30 pm, the night-time holiday lights parade begins at the corner of Date Palm Drive and Perez Road and winds its way back to City Hall where the festival portion is held. Read more.

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