Planning Commission grapples with how high to ‘Dream’

Developers of the Dream Hotel project are asking to build more than two dozen additional condos, saying the sales of those units are necessary to help fund the project. Neighbors predict ruined views.
A rendering of the Dream Hotel project as seen from the street.

Nobody is against one of the city’s long-stalled major hotel projects getting back under construction. But revisions working their way through City Hall have some questioning whether the developer needs to now scale things back.

Catch up: Plans for The Dream Hotel at 450 South Calle Alvarado shifted from a 200-unit hotel with 143 condominiums in 2007 to 156 hotel rooms and 40 condos in 2019. Some construction started then, but it languished until this summer.

  • Its developers are now asking to build more than two dozen additional condos, saying the sales of those units are necessary to funding the entire project. 

  • They held a community meeting in early August to show the revised plans to neighbors, who had few questions at the time and were generally pleased with forward progress.

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The news: On Wednesday, the Palm Springs Planning Commission heard from some of those neighbors — many of them from the adjacent Center Court Condominiums — during its regular meeting. Upon further review of the plans, they said it appears their views would be “obliterated” because a building holding some of the new condos would now be 12 feet higher than earlier approved. 

  • “It does not obliterate the views,” said Lauri Kibby, who is responsible for guiding the project through the process. “We have spent a lot of time looking at the view corridors.”

Planning commissioners sided with the neighbors, asking how they could go about both moving the project forward and assuring the height issues were addressed.

  • In the end, they voted unanimously to continue the matter for two weeks, asking Kibby to bring back plans that show some height reductions but still allow for the additional units.

What they’re saying: “The condo complex behind this has been taking a beating for years in terms of losing its views. I think we can do better.” — J.R. Roberts, planning commissioner

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