Pierson Boulevard & Palm Drive


Desert Hot Springs, California


The City of Desert Hot Springs



When the City of Desert Hot Springs was looking to upgrade their image, the decided to start in the heart of the city at the intersection of Palm Drive and Pierson Blvd. Their intention was that all future streetscape projects would extend from this highly visible downtown intersection. The project was developed as a city wide “vortex” concept radiating from the natural energy that converges at this intersection. These natural energies include extreme heat, wind, water, and seismic activity. The design included materials and forms derived from this vortex energy concept.

They include chunk glass representing water and large rustic boulders protruding from the medians as well as grouped diamond forms signifying the San Andreas Fault which passes directly below the intersection.

A large metallic Halo stands stand over the intersection and is visible from many blocks away. This element was intended to be the central gateway of the city and stands as the most predominant feature of the project. Radiating out, new pedestrian friendly sidewalks filled with pavers are garnished with desert appropriate trees and a landscape filled with textures and color. The medians are accented by a meandering stream flowing through large boulders and regimented date palms. Different sized rocks and cobbles will the medians and provide contrast to the groundcovers and barrel cacti.

The median noses are filled with striking blue chunk glass which are illuminated at night. In the evening, the sidewalks are illuminated with pedestrian scale refracted light poles poles, and the palm trees in the medians are up lit to create an inviting sense of place. Intended to revitalize the downtown, the renovation of Palm and Pierson achieves is purpose by breathing new life into this old city by creating a more inviting pedestrian friendly downtown with street parking and interesting landscapes.