The Planning, Environment and Public Comment (PEPC) website is NPS's primary tool dedicated to facilitating public input into decision making processes. The PEPC website was taken offline during the government shutdown, which prohibited the ability of affected parties and the public to provide comments on any projects or proposals whose comment periods were open between December 21, 2018, and Feb 4, 2019, when PEPC was put back in service. To ensure that the public has ample opportunity to review and comment, the comment period for this proposal will reopen on Feb 4, 2019 and be extended through Feb 19, 2019. Any written comments received or comments entered into PEPC prior to the shutdown will be considered and included in the overall project record.
The National Park Service is proposing to rehabilitate the Cottonwood Visitor Center in the southeast portion of the park, closest to Highway 10. The purpose of the rehabilitation effort is to improve the visitor facilities, both to accommodate growing visitation to Joshua Tree and to better interpret the park's unique ecosystem, within a more sustainable, comfortable, and energy-efficient building.