COD leaders confirm intent to move forward with Palm Springs campus, Roadrunner Motors project

The College of the Desert Board of Trustees has confirmed its support for building a new Palm Springs campus and automotive education facility called “Roadrunner Motors,” officials announced Wednesday.

During their Jan. 21 board meeting, trustees also expressed interest in visiting city council meetings within their districts to provide updates on various projects for campuses located in Palm Desert, Cathedral City, Mecca/Thermal, Palm Springs and Desert Hot Springs, COD spokeswoman Jessica Enders said.

Enders added that members of the board will meet regularly with the college’s counsel and staff to ensure projects move forward and to check the spending of funds.

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The various projects, which include expansion, repair and modernization of campuses, are funded by Measure B, which was voted on in 2004, and Measure CC, which was voted on in 2016. The two measures provided the school with $924.3 million, she said.

“Faculty involvement, feedback on the plans and a robust assessment of community needs are fundamental to a successful design process and will result in the best educational services to our students and community,” Superintendent Martha Garcia said.

Enders provided specific updates on the Roadrunner Motors campus, saying staff members are currently evaluating alternative sites for the campus. The college announced in October that the original site, adjacent to the Cathedral City Auto Center, was more expensive than initially anticipated and they would weigh other options.

According to Enders, the original site is still under consideration
alongside two alternative sites. A final decision is expected later this year.

The Palm Springs campus had been at the center of accusations of a political power play, fueled partially by the fact Garcia had failed to communicate with city officials pressing her on whether she and others in control at the college remained committed to building a satellite campus in the city.

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