With the increasing popularity of the area around Joshua Tree National Park — both for park visitors and for people who can choose where they’d like to work from home — the area has seen a spike in development and home prices.

Homes, especially those being built for use as short-term rental properties for Airbnb and Vrbo, are rising in the area, just as the prices for those homes are increasing.

Home values soared 84% since 2020, and the median price is now more than $456,000.

“Booming is an understatement … We start getting people from all over, not just California but all over the world. And then we also got, you know, the celebrities that were coming here,” said realtor J. Ovier Alvarez.

Though the construction is symbolic of an increase in jobs and tourism, some locals are worried about the environmental impacts of the construction and visitors to the area.

“When developers come in, they’re clearing out all of the plant life. They’re clearing out the species … They’re bringing concrete … and it’s destructive,” said Joshua David, who joined his girlfriend, Emily Acerra, in creating Desert Sky Escapes to share their love of camping with visitors.

Alvarez said there is tension between those who seek to preserve Joshua Tree’s way of life and those who would like to see even more development.

“There is yet part of the community, they are concerned about the environment, they’re concerned about the trees, and they’re concerned that the people that are coming here are not respecting that. But we also have the other side, that they’re very open and welcoming and they want the progress,” he said.