Palm Desert Sheriff's Station

Palm Desert Sherrif's Station | Palm Desert, CA, US
North elevation.
Palm Desert Sherrif's Station | Palm Desert, CA, US
Lobby area, Palm Desert Sherrif's Station.
Palm Desert Sherrif's Station | Palm Desert, CA, US
Palm Desert Sherrif's Station | Palm Desert, CA, US
Riverside County
Palm Desert, California, USA

This new sheriff station is not only the first LEED project completed in Riverside County, but also represents a strong public safety element in its community. The previous station was over 20 minutes away from the city it served, and did not have adequate space to meet existing operational needs much less the needs that would arise from anticipated population growth.

The architecture in its forms, materials and colors is intended to have a clean, contemporary, civic character reflecting the natural beauty of its desert environment. The front of the building faces north; the transparency of its glass façade represents openness to the public. The facility is clearly planned with secure operation spaces separately zoned from public areas. Working closely with the county to understand its 24/7 operations needs, the project team designed a prototype that would maximize efficiency. Architects, engineers and planners carefully considered the operational flow, focusing on how staff members enter the building and dress down; how equipment is issued; the flow of detainees; and how property evidence is stored. The prototype was applied to this new sheriff station, and refined for other county stations as well.

The site is an undeveloped parcel with an area of over 10 acres, sloping from southwest to northeast with an elevation differential of almost 23 feet. With a hot and arid local climate, the site is not published on any flood maps (according to FEMA) and ground water has not been encountered in soil borings of up to 51 feet deep. The absence of infrastructure to handle surface water meant designers had to decide how best to handle stormwater run-off. Green technologies and environmental features were incorporated while keeping the construction cost within the client's budget.

  • Sustainable Features: Alternative Energy, Bioswales, Energy Efficiency, Heat Island Reduction Strategies, LEED Silver, Local/Regional Materials, Photovoltaics, Renewable Energy On-site, Stormwater Management, Water Efficient Landscaping
  • Type of Construction: New Construction
  • Size: 81,789 SF (Sheriff's Station: 53,872 SF; Evidence Warehouse: 19,784 SF; Central Plant: 8,133 SF)
  • Professional Services: Architecture, Engineering, Sustainable Design Consulting
  • Project Components: Central Evidence Storage, Central Utility Plant, Conference Room, DNA/Serology Unit, Data/Communications Center, Detention, Evidence Triage Unit, Forensic Laboratory, Holding Cell, Latent Prints Lab, New Intake and Release Area, Support Spaces, Visitor Lobby, Weapons Storage
  • Project Type: Crime Laboratory, Detention, Enforcement, Public Safety
  • Related Projects: Architecture, Civic