Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of City and Regional Planning


City and Regional Planning


Hemalata Dandekar, Ph.D.


The Piedras Blancas Motel is a 1950’s era roadside motel comprised of 11 lodging units, plus a cafe, laundry room, manager’s apartment, and adjacent storage area. It is located seven miles north of San Simeon and nine miles south of the San Luis Obispo/Monterey County line. In 2005, the property was purchased using State, Federal, and private funds, and then transferred to the California Department of Parks and Recreation (State Parks). Although it has been closed to the public since 2005, the Site offers day-use parking and convenient beach access.

This professional project, under contract with the California Coastal Conservancy, provides information necessary for the future redevelopment of the Piedras Blancas Motel. It demonstrates the feasibility of a preferred development alternative through several analyses including: a structural analysis of the existing building(s), a constraints analysis, an evaluation of regulatory requirements, and an assessment of redevelopment options based on preliminary market research and financial analysis.

The primary objective of the Coastal Conservancy and State Parks is to provide low-cost overnight lodging and visitor services along the Big Sur Coast. The Motel would serve as an alternative to existing expensive lodges or resorts as well as existing tent or RV camping that may not serve as an option for some visitors.