Proposed surf park in California desert is rejected by La Quinta City Council
As if California’s proposed massive new surf park in the Mojave Desert weren’t enough, the local La Quinta, California city council rejected it Tuesday night.
La Quinta County sits in the Mojave National Preserve, a place that few other cities in the state would dare lay claims to. Its name is derived from the Native American word for land that is surrounded by desert.
Now, locals want to expand the community’s boundaries to include as much of the Mojave as possible. They want a 1,600-acre expanse of beach for their kids, for the town’s growing population and for the enjoyment and preservation of their community.
The proposal, submitted by real estate developer Jim and Deborah Van Horn, called ‘La Quinta Beach’, would create a resort-like place complete with a six-tower high rise hotel and a marina.
The park would include a pier and two sandy beaches, one long and one short, with parking areas, restaurants, a grocery store, surf shop, a golf course and three motels.
But the majority of La Quinta council members couldn’t quite pull the idea together.
At least one council member who voted against it called it “a park of the future.”
“We should be looking to use the space up here for the betterment of our community,” council member Lisa Wicks said, speaking before the vote. “It’s not a surf park or a surf community.”
Council members said they wanted La Quinta to take its destiny in its own hands, an idea they saw as a threat to their community’s quality of life.
“I feel very much like I have some authority on what is important for our community,” Councilmember Mike Smith said.
Smith introduced his motion with the idea of “tough love” — urging the town’s young children not to follow in the footsteps of the Van Horns.
“I have no idea how they will manage our community,” he said of the future residents.
Council members, however, took exception to the idea the park could be a magnet for outsiders.
“I do not see why we should be a magnet that attracts people