Country music fans left the desert by the thousands Monday morning after the three-day Stagecoach music festival. The end of Stagecoach marks the end of three weeks of concerts in Indio. But, promoter Goldenvoice who puts on the Coachella and Stagecoach music festivals could be making moves towards an expansion in the desert.
One of the steps towards expanding is monitoring the concerts' impact on the Coachella Valley. "I know they're doing aspects of it, it's really not the city being involved with it," said Glenn Miller, mayor of Indio. "Goldenvoice and their partners are looking into bringing better communication throughout the whole area and also looking into the E.I.R."
The EIR, or environmental impact report, measures things like traffic congestion and noise. There were signs the traffic was being measure over the last month. One example was orange Pelican boxes connected to wires in the road which count cars. Also, the National Data Service hired people in the desert to help count cars in high traffic areas. Michael Cordero works part-time for NDS and says Goldenvoice contracted NDS to begin measurements for the EIR.
"It shows that Goldenvoice is concerned about what's going on out here in the community," said Cordero. "They want to make sure they have as little impact as possible when they hold these festivals."
Cordero counted cards during both weekends of Coachella and Stagecoach, and was surprised by his results. "It really didn't have as big of an impact as I thought it was going to," said Cordero. "I was out there because I thought we were going to see all this traffic. But it wasn't that bad, we didn't see a whole lot. It was flowing pretty smoothly for the most part"
Those results could mean a green light for Goldenvoice expansions in the desert. In fact, they've already started to make their way to making a more permanent home here.
"They have put in a bid for 280 acres, the Eldorado Polo Club right next to the Empire Polo Club," said MIller. "They are moving forward. I know they're doing their do diligence. There's a 90 day window for that."
While some may disagree, Cordero thinks it's a great idea to expand not only for Goldenvoice but for the Coachella Valley community.
"They obviously see this as one of their cash cows, this valley," said Cordero. "So I mean more power to them because we love all the dollars we get here in our valley."