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PALM DESERT, CA-The City Council here has approved a land trade with an Irvine developer in hopes of creating a project including high-end retail space, a hotel and condominiums. Under the deal approved recently by a council vote, the city will take title to 11.24 acres at Country Club and Desert Willow drives that is valued at $6.2 million.

The 11.24 acres is owned by developer Sanderson J. Ray Desert Springs Partners. In exchange for the title to the 11.24 acres, the city will give Sanderson J. Ray 9.34 acres valued at $3.2 million near Portola Avenue and Country Club Drive, plus $3 million in cash. The deal is scheduled to close before the end of this year.

The land that the city will receive is next to Desert Springs Marketplace, which is owned by Sanderson J. Ray. The approximately 110,000-sf grocery-anchored shopping center occupies just over 12 acres and is across the street from the Marriott Desert Springs Resort & Spa.

If the city’s plans for the mixed-use project on its new land come to fruition, the new development will add to a growing list of retail projects that have turned Palm Desert into one of the shopping centers of the Coachella Valley. The retail venues in the city include an enclosed mall, Westfield Shoppingtown Palm Desert, as well as Desert Crossing and One Eleven Town Center, which have attracted national tenants.

Palm Desert shopping already includes upscale retail in places like the El Paseo district, a mile-long stretch of specialty shops, art galleries, jewelry stores, boutique and restaurants. The city bills this district as “the Rodeo Drive of the Desert.”

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