Editor’s note; Lake Elsinore is one of the fastest-growing cities in California and the nation. This is the third in a three-part series detailing the explosive growth — economic development, investment and population — planned for Lake Elsinore. Part One was an overview and covered infrastructure projects to support the growth. Part two described Commercial and Industrial growth and some of the businesses coming to the area. Part three covers residential projects and population growth.
“Residential development in Lake Elsinore is expanding at a high rate,” according to Justin Kirk, Principal City Planner.
The city is considered one of the fastest growing cities in California. The city, which had 3,530 residents in 1970, currently has a population of 62,000 and is growing by 2000 residents per year in a region where there is population of 250,000 within a 10-mile radius and 750,000 within the region. The city’s population has grown 126 percent since 1990; California’s population grew 27 percent in that same time period. Population at buildout is estimated to be around 320,000.
Median household income is approaching $75,000 per year. Median age is 31. Housing is affordable with a median home price below $300,000. Zillow.com states median home value in Lake Elsinore is $273,100. Property values rose 12.5 percent between 2014 and 2015. Lake Elsinore is averaging 600 new homes annually. The City approved over 5000 building permits in 2015.
According to Kirk, there are 1,262 approved single-family residential (SFR) projects in construction, 652 multi-family residential projects in process, and approximately 29,000 residential units approved and yet to be built.
“There is a significant push for “affordable” entry level homes,” said Kirk as he described residential trends, “including multi-family, small lot single-family and condominiums. There is also significant activity in infill development: smaller tentative maps and single lot developments. There is a significant volume of residential development applications being made regularly.”
Approved residential projects include Summerly with 389 units in six neighborhoods and Canyon Hills with 530 units in two planning areas.
Summerly developments include Sunrise Springs (91 SFR), Claiborne and Sea Country (117 SFR), Willows (63 SFR), Woodside Homes (59 SFR), and Monarch Grove (59 SFR). McMillin Homes had 1,979 SFR’s approved with 600 built and 900 sold.
Canyon Hills developments include Senterra (74 SFR and 82 multi-family homes) on the Menifee border and Westridge Phase 8 (456 detached condominiums) at the northwest corner of Canyon Hills Road and Railroad Canyon Road.
Other projects underway include The Terraces at Alberhill Ranch (43 SFR), Trieste at Rosetta Canyon (75 SFR) at the southeast corner of Central Avenue and Rosetta Canyon Drive, Lakeshore Point (150 apartments) on Riverside drive between Grand Avenue and Eisenhower Drive, and The Villages at Lakeshore (163 multi-family homes) on 20 acres at the northwest corner of Riverside Drive and Grand Avenue.
Multi-family projects in process include Cottage Lane (42 units and purchase of a tax-default parcel for drainage), Lakeshore Senior Apartments (121 units in two buildings), Lakeview Manor (104 units), Mission Trail Affordable Apartments (81 units), Lakeshore Town Center (108 units), Lake Resort Apartments (126 units), and Linden Place in Summerly (95 units).
Tuscany Hills, on Summerhill Drive north of La Strada is pending secondary access for buildout of 1955 SFR’s.
Recently approved specific plans include 1600 single family homes on 553 acres at Southshore I and II at Spyglass Ranch on Main Street north of Camino del Norte, 452 single family homes and a five-acre park at Terracina sitting on 156 acres along Terra Cotta Road between Lakeshore Drive and Nichols Road and 8,224 residential units at Alberhill Villages distributed over a wide variety of unit types and sizes.
The Alberhill Villages Specific Plan, 1,400 acres with a 63-acre 6,000 student university and 4 million square feet of non-residential, is currently facing a ballot initiative – Measure A – whose passage is opposed by the City Council of Lake Elsinore, the Lake Elsinore Chamber of Commerce, the developer and numerous local residents. According to an independent financial analysis by Development Management Group, Inc., the residents of the city of Lake Elsinore (outside of Alberhill Villages) would be responsible for an aggregate deficit of up to $242.9 million over a 20-year period. According to the report, the passage of Measure A would “severely and irreparably impact the ability for the city of Lake Elsinore to provide even the most basic of public safety (police and fire) service to the community as a whole.”
The City, with approval by the developer, has recently adopted an alternative comprehensive plan for Alberhill Villages that will result in $25.7 million in positive revenues for vital City services. However, Measure A remains on the ballot since the deadlines to withdraw it have passed. “Passage of Measure A would be financially devastating for the City of Lake Elsinore,” said Kim Cousins, President and CEO of the Lake Elsinore Chamber of Commerce, “We need the citizens to physically show up to vote “NO” on May 2. The project is huge, and the revised plan better benefits the City and its residents.”
“We have been planning and continue to plan for explosive growth here in Lake Elsinore,” said Mayor Bob Magee, “We have the land, a fast-track business-and investment-friendly climate, a fiscally-responsible infrastructure plan to support growth, affordable housing options and a quality of life that is diverse and exciting.”
This three-part series on “Lake Elsinore is Exploding” is a brief status and insight into the city’s progress toward its vision statement: “The City of Lake Elsinore will be the ULTIMATE lake destination where all can live, work and play, build futures and fulfill dreams.”