Wind Power in Palm Springs

I once wrote about the power of the wind in shaping the landscape, and during a recent architectural photography project in Palm Springs, I gained firsthand experience with wind power.

Wind turbines in Palm Springs, CA

High winds are a common condition at the north end of Palm Springs. Consequently, a large wind farm resides in the area. The wind turbines are large, numerous, and constantly in motion.

Wind turbines in Palm Springs, CA

Another feature of this area of Palm Springs--a city known for its distinctive architecture--is a unique house inspired by Buckminster Fuller, the inventor of the geodesic dome.

The site of the house puts it right in the middle of the wind farm, and you can view the turbines from most of the many windows in the house. The house did not always have all these windows, however. California architect Pavlina Williams, AIA bought the house a few years ago and redesigned it, making it into the beautiful home I’m sharing with you here.

Geodesic Dome House, Palm Springs CA. Architect: Pavlina Williams, AIA

During my last night at the house, the winds were particularly strong. I believe they were 40-50 miles per hour steadily, with gusts even higher. As I worked outside, at times fighting the wind to stay upright, I understood why they chose this location for the wind farm. It was actually difficult to remain standing in the gusts, and I worried that my photography would be affected. Fortunately, my tripod withstood the high wind and allowed me to produce very sharp photographs.

I continue to be amazed by the power of the wind. Not only does it help shape the desert landscape of the Southwest, but it also provides a steady source of power in some places. I enjoyed the opportunity for a short time to reside among these huge wind turbines as they harnessed the power of the wind.

If you’d like to see additional photographs of the house, including some interior images, take a look at this blog post on my architectural photography website. And if I’ve inspired you to visit Palm Springs to see the house for yourself, you can book it through Airbnb at this listing. (Please note: Some of the photographs in the Airbnb listing are by me, but many are not.)

Geodesic Dome House, Palm Springs, CA. Architect: Pavlina Williams, AIA