The Desert Sun’s real estate and business reporter, Amy DiPierro, writes that the developer of Skyborne, Lansing Strategic Management LLC, is in the process of hiring a home builder to resume construction on two unfinished neighborhoods within the Skyborne community. Skyborne is a 640 acre planned community, located 3 miles to the west of downtown Desert Hot Springs, bounded by Mission Lakes Boulevard, Worsley Road, Karen Avenue and Pierson Boulevard.

In the early 1990s, before the Skyborne site was annexed by Desert Hot Springs, a development proposal called for 1,560 residential units and an 18-hole golf course. In 2004, City leaders approved plans calling for 2,140 homes. D.R. Horton started construction in Skyborne in 2006 and completed just 178 homes before selling the balance of the project in 2008 as the Desert housing market crashed.

Currently, Lansing Strategic Management is planning to build the remaining 216 of 394 homes in the first two neighborhoods of the development over the next two years.  After that, Lansing Strategic Management can exercise an option to buy back the rest of the neighborhoods and start building in them. Lansing Strategic Management has not yet set a date to resume construction nor have they set prices (although resale home prices in Skyborne over recent months have averaged about $260,000 to $270,000).

Lansing Strategic Management is not the only developer in the Coachella Valley reviving projects that were halted as a result of the housing downturn. In Palm Springs, two long-delayed residential projects are set to move forward. Toll Brothers purchased a site that is slated for 102 townhouses (originally called the Cameron and now renamed Cody Place) and Freehold Communities is scheduled to begin building its first homes in Miralon (formerly called Avalon), a 1,150-home , 309 acre agriculture-oriented community that will include a 7,000 olive trees. Despite these developments, new home construction in the Coachella Valley is still far below pre-recession highs. There were roughly 7,000 new homes permitted annually in the Coachella Valley between 2004 and 2006 (with as many as 8,478 new homes permitted in 2004 alone), versus a preliminary estimate of 1,207 new homes permitted in the Coachella Valley in 2018. Desert Hot Springs permitted 41 new homes in 2018, according to Census data, a steep decline from the peak of 1,254 units permitted in 2004. And in Palm Springs, a preliminary estimate shows 152 new homes permitted in 2018 versus 784 new homes permitted in 2005.

To read Amy DiPierro’s original article, courtesy of The Desert Sun: