CV Link will be an innovative, multi-modal facility of national importance that connects communities in the Coachella Valley while providing significant environmental, health, wellness, and economic benefits.

The Coachella Valley’s CV Link presents a bold new approach to mobility. In 2013, Alta began development of the CV Link master plan for a nearly 80-mile portion of the multimodal pathway connecting the nine cities of the Eastern Riverside County region. The three-year, $1.5M planning and design project involves a seven-firm consultant team led by Alta. The team is preparing a parkway master plan, a Neighborhood Electric Vehicles (NEV) Plan to meet legislative requirements, and preliminary engineering for a core 50 mile segment.  The proposed pathway system will accommodate low speed electric vehicles (LSEVs) in addition to bicyclists and pedestrians. Alta is providing recommendations for on-street segments at the highest design standard, and supporting infrastructure, including LSEV charging facilities. Alta is also recommending an implementation strategy with immediate next steps and segments for near-term construction or upgrades.

The now completed conceptual design focuses on a theme of contrast while emphasizing the valley as a national leader in innovative technologies. Contrasting the desert context and site character, design elements put a twist in the pathway experience. Solar panel mounted shade structures with undulating forms emphasize fluidity and motion, while an elevated pathway is a gently twisted articulation of the nearby trapezoidal storm channel form. Partially subterranean segments are sensitively nestled into the most contentious areas (such as gated communities).

Wayfinding will be intuitive via bold cues of color indicating one’s orientation depending on the direction one is facing. Light tubes are employed to capture the attention of passing motorists, while motion activated digitally projected art enlivens blank concrete walls and dark underpasses. The innovative and efficient use of energy is a strong theme showcased with the use of solar power, motion sensing lighting, wind activated art elements, air quality monitoring stations, and pathway counters that convert trips to miles, calories and GHG’s saved.

The Coachella Valley Association of Governments and members of the community and project team celebrated the opening of the first phase of the CV Link on February 23, 2018, a 2.3-mile segment, stretching between Palm Springs and Cathedral City.