The Desert Sun’s Rosalie Murphy writes about a new proposed master-planned community, Virada, in north Indio that could see construction of nearly 1,300 houses, condos and apartments in nine neighborhoods of single-family homes.  These neighborhoods would likely be sold to other builders for design and construction and could be gated.  The plan calls for 645 houses on lots ranging from 4,250 square feet to 9,900 square feet, four neighborhoods for 474 duplexes and condos and one parcel for 170 apartments. 

The plans also call for the preservation of 165 acres of open space in the Indio Hills, construction of roughly 106 acres of public park between the preserve and the community and 81 acres of easement space limited to biking or walking trails in northern Indio.  The open space and park replace a 27 hole golf course and assisted living facility in an earlier plan. The proposed project would be one of the largest that the Coachella Valley has seen in the last decade and is located east of Adams Street north of Avenue 38 (northeast of Sun City Palm Desert). 

Virada’s master plan is being designed by Family Development in partnership Presidio Residential Capital.  The land in question has been entitled twice in the past, according to Indio city documents. The first plan proposed 939 houses and condos, an 18-hole golf course and a few acres of commercial development as early as 1992. The site was sold to a new developer in 2003, who in turn proposed development of 1,200 homes and grew the golf course to 27 holes, as the Fiesta deVida development. In 2013, the developers sold the land to a subsidiary of Presidio Residential Capital, according to county documents. 

Virada is being planned as a "sustainable community," with plans for bike and neighborhood electric vehicle lanes and a 6.5-acre solar array providing power to the development's public areas. In addition, the developers plan to build a fire station to serve the area, including part of Sun City Palm Desert and the city of Indio will likely consider a police substation nearby. The development will be governed by new landscape rules instituted by the California Water Commission last summer, which stipulate grass and pools can only comprise of 25 percent of a new home's landscape area. 

To read Rosalie Murphy’s original article, courtesy of The Desert Sun, please visit: