Rancho Cucamonga is a suburban city forty miles southeast of Los Angeles, California in San Bernardino County, California. Its estimated 2014 population was 174,305, a 36% increase since 2000. The city was incorporated in 1977, as a result of a vote among the residents of the unincorporated communities of Alta Loma, Cucamonga, and Etiwanda.
Business Insider magazine ranked Haven View Estates, one of the city's many gated communities, 13th on its list of "The 27 Richest Neighborhoods in Southern California", just behind the Los Angeles neighborhood of Bel Air, which ranked 12th.
In 2006, Money magazine ranked the city 42nd on its "Best Places to Live" list. L. Dennis Michael has been the city's mayor since 2011, with John Gillison as the city manager.
Rancho Cucamonga is located at 34°7′24″N 117°34′46″W (34.123345, -117.579404), or about 39 miles (63 km) east of Los Angeles.
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 39.9 square miles (103 km2). 99.95% of it is land and 0.05% is water.
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Rancho Cucamonga was a stop on the Old Spanish Trail, the Salt Lake Road, the Mojave Trail, and the former U.S. Route 66 (now signed as Foothill Boulevard).
Census Pop. %±
1980 55,250 —
1990 101,409 83.5%
2000 127,743 26.0%
2010 165,269 29.4%
Est. 2014 174,305  5.5%
U.S. Decennial Census
The 2010 United States Census reported that Rancho Cucamonga had a population of 165,269. The population density was 4,145.2 people per square mile (1,600.5/km²). The racial makeup of Rancho Cucamonga was 102,401 (62.0%) White (42.7% Non-Hispanic White), 15,246 (9.2%) African American, 1,134 (0.7%) Native American, 17,208 (10.4%) Asian, 443 (0.3%) Pacific Islander, 19,878 (12.0%) from other races, and 8,959 (5.4%) from two or more races. There were 57,688 residents of Hispanic or Latino ancestry, of any race (34.9%).
The census reported that 162,145 people (98.1% of the population) lived in households, 136 (0.1%) lived in non-institutionalized group quarters, and 2,988 (1.8%) were institutionalized.
Out of a total of 54,383 households, 23,055 (42.4%) had children under the age of 18 living in them, 30,533 (56.1%) were opposite-sex married couples living together, 7,514 (13.8%) had a female householder with no husband present, and 3,257 (6.0%) had a male householder with no wife present, as well as 2,995 (5.5%) unmarried opposite-sex partnerships and 425 (0.8%) same-sex married couples or partnerships. 9,956 households (18.3%) were made up of individuals and 2,679 (4.9%) had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 2.98. Over the 41,304 families (76.0% of all households), the average family size was 3.41.
The age distribution of the city was as follows: 42,550 people (25.7%) under the age of 18, 17,365 people (10.5%) aged 18 to 24, 48,600 people (29.4%) aged 25 to 44, 43,710 people (26.4%) aged 45 to 64, and 13,044 people (7.9%) who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 34.5 years. For every 100 females there were 97.6 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 95.2 males.
There were 56,618 housing units at an average density of 1,420.1 per square mile (548.3/km²), of which 35,250 (64.8%) were owner-occupied, and 19,133 (35.2%) were occupied by renters. The homeowner vacancy rate was 1.6%; the rental vacancy rate was 5.2%. 110,570 people (66.9% of the population) lived in owner-occupied housing units and 51,575 people (31.2%) lived in rental housing units.
During 2009–2013, Rancho Cucamonga had a median household income of $77,835, with 6.9% of the population living below the federal poverty line.
As of the census of 2000, there were 127,743 people, 40,863 households, and 31,832 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,317.0/km² (3,411.4/mi²). There were 42,134 housing units at an average density of 434.4/km² (1,125.2/mi²). The racial makeup of the city was 66.53% White, 9.00% Asian, 0.67% Native American, 5.99% African American, 0.27% Pacific Islander, 13.25% from other races, and 5.41% from a biracial or multiracial background. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 27.78% of the population.
There are 40,863 households, of which 44.7% have children under the age of 18. 60.2% of households consist of a married couple living together. 12.8% have a female householder with no husband present. 22.1% were non-families. 16.8% of all households are single-person and 4.1% have a person of 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.04 and the average family size was 3.44.
In the city, the population spread is as follows: 29.9% are under the age of 18, 9.9% are from 18 to 24, 33.2% are from 25 to 44, 21.0% are from 45 to 64, and 6.1% are 65 years of age or older. The median age is 32 years. For every 100 females there were 100.1 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 98.0 males.
The median income for a household in the city was $78,428 and the median income for a family was $91,240. Males had a median income of $50,288 versus $40,952 for females. The per capita income for the city was $23,702. About 4.9% of families and 7.1% of the population were below the poverty line, including 7.6% of those under age 18 and 7.3% of those age 65 or over.
Orchards and farms, such as this Cucamonga ranch photographed in 1884, had dominated the landscape of the area until the recent land development boom in the late 20th century.
Commerce and culture
An example of the office parks along Haven Avenue.
While most of the city's land area is devoted to residential areas, Rancho Cucamonga, like its neighbors Ontario and Fontana, is a major center for the Logistics industry in Southern California. This is due to its proximity to two Interstate Highways and Ontario International Airport, and the space afforded by the large tracts of former agricultural land in the southern section of the city. In the area around Milliken Avenue, between Archibald and Etiwanda Avenues, Foothill Boulevard, and Fourth Street, about seven square miles of land are primarily occupied by numerous massive distribution centers, and even more, smaller manufacturing companies. This area is ringed by wealthy office parks, mostly along Haven Avenue, and shopping strips, such as the Terra Vista Town Center (part of a nearly two-square-mile master-planned community in the center of the city), and malls, such as Victoria Gardens (shopping center), and the Ontario Mills, across Fourth Street in Ontario. The city is also home to Tamco Steel, which runs the only steel mini-mill in California. This mill recycles ferrous scrap, such as junked cars and appliances, to produce rebar.
The city hosts LoanMart Field, (formerly known as The Epicenter), a minor-league baseball stadium, home of the Rancho Cucamonga Quakes. The Quakes' mascot, Tremor, is a "Rallysaurus".
Victoria Gardens and Foothills Crossing
An example of the architecture and urban design of Victoria Gardens.
The Victoria Gardens Cultural Center.
The Victoria Gardens lifestyle center, built in the eastern end of the city, is located at the intersection of Foothill and Day Creek Boulevards. Since the city had never developed a traditional commercial downtown like neighboring cities Ontario and Upland had, efforts were made in the design of Victoria Gardens to bring elements of more traditional and urban town design to what had historically been a suburban city. While retaining many characteristics of traditional shopping malls, such as large anchor stores, a food court, and vast parking lots and garages, the smaller stores are arranged as city blocks in a grid of two-lane streets, featuring lush landscaping and metered "teaser parking" in front of the stores, which open onto the sidewalk. There are two "Main Streets", which run from west to east across the center. Running from north to south between them is a pedestrian axis leading from one of the Macy's anchor stores, through a "town square" between a pair of mixed-use office buildings, to the Victoria Gardens Cultural Center, which contains a 570-seat theater and a city library. There are restaurants throughout the center, both well-known chains and unique eateries including California Pizza Kitchen, N7 Creamery, Fleming's, Gyu-Kaku Japanese BBQ Dining, Harry's Pacific Grill, Johnny Rockets, King's Fish House, Lucille's BBQ, P.F. Chang's China Bistro, Richie's Diner, T.G.I. Friday's, and Yard House. The center features a 12 screen AMC Theatre. Foothills Crossing is a shopping center located at Foothill Blvd just west of Interstate 15.
Across the street from Victoria Gardens, Rancho Cucamonga also boasts Southern California's only Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World superstore.
According to the City's 2011 Comprehensive Annual Financial Report,  the top employers in the city are:
# Employer # of employees
1 Etiwanda School District 1,312
2 Chaffey College 1,300
3 Amphastar Pharmaceuticals 999
4 City of Rancho Cucamonga 880
5 Alta Loma School District 783
6 Macy's 750
7 Central School District 680
8 West Valley Detention Center 668
9 Big Lots 521
10 Mercury Insurance Company 509
Rancho Cucamonga is a General Law City, incorporated in 1977 under the "Council-Manager" form of local government. The four-member Council, plus the Mayor, City Clerk, and City Treasurer, are all elected at-large by the voters of the city. The Council then appoints the City Manager, who acts as the administrative head of the city government, and is responsible for the day-to-day operations, code enforcement, and the fiscal soundness of the municipal government. The council itself serves as a local legislative body.
According to the city’s most recent Comprehensive Annual Financial Report, the city’s various funds had $278.3 million in Revenues, $243.6 million in expenditures, $1,400.7 million in total assets, $492.1 million in total liabilities, and $583.3 million in cash and investments.
The Rancho Cucamonga Civic Center government complex west entrance, as seen from across Haven Avenue. The Civic Center complex houses government functions for the city.
Main entrance to Rancho Cucamonga City Hall. This entrance forms the east side of the Rancho Cucamonga Civic Center, on the opposite side to the street side shown above.
The structure of the management and coordination of city services is:
City department Director
City Manager John Gillison
Assistant City Manager Linda Daniels
Deputy City Manager/Administrative Services Lori Sassoon
Deputy City Manager/Economic & Community Development Jeff Bloom
City Attorney James L. Markman
Animal Services Director Veronica Fincher
Building and Safety Official Trang Huynh
Community Services Director Nettie Nielsen
City Engineer Mark Steuer
Finance Director Tamara L. Layne
Fire Chief Mike Bell
Human Resources Director Chris Paxton
Library Director Robert Karatsu
Planning Manager Candyce Burnett
Police Chief Anthony Onodera
Public Works Services Director Bill Wittkopf
In the California State Legislature, Rancho Cucamonga is in the 23rd Senate District, represented by Republican Mike Morrell, and in the 40th Assembly District, represented by Republican Marc Steinorth.
In the United States House of Representatives, Rancho Cucamonga is in California's 31st congressional district, represented by Democrat Pete Aguilar.
In 2005, the non-partisan Bay Area Center for Voting Research ranked Rancho Cucamonga as the 28th most conservative city in the United States.
Since incorporation in 1977, law enforcement services in Rancho Cucamonga City have been provided through a contract with the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department.
Rancho Cucamonga is also home to the Foothill Communities San Bernardino County Courthouse, which is housed in a building adjacent to the Rancho Cucamonga Civic Center, in a government complex located at Haven Avenue and Civic Center Drive in the city. The Civic Center houses the Rancho Cucamonga city hall, the city police department, and other local government offices.
NRG's Etiwanda Generating Station, and Cucamonga Peak.
Rancho Cucamonga's location at the base of the San Gabriel Mountains has necessitated the use of numerous control channels and basins to reduce the seasonal flood danger from the several streams descending from the range. In past years, some of the city's roads were known for flooding. Hermosa Avenue, in particular, now features many high curbs and extra-large storm drain grates to reduce flooding.
Rancho Cucamonga receives natural gas from the Southern California Gas Company. The city's water supply and sewage are managed by the Cucamonga Valley Water District. Garbage collection is by Burrtec Disposal, phone service is from Verizon, and cable TV is provided by Time Warner Cable and Charter Communications.
Electric power in Rancho Cucamonga is provided by Southern California Edison and the Rancho Cucamonga Municipal Utility, and the city is also home to the Reliant Energy Etiwanda Generating Station, on Etiwanda Avenue. This facility, one of five Reliant stations in California, is a natural gas-fired power plant, which began operation in 1963. At 640 MW net capacity, it is Reliant's second-highest capacity plant on the West Coast. It utilizes four steam turbine generators; of which units three and four are currently active. Steam turbines one and two, as well as a combustion turbine, were retired in 2003 and 2004, respectively. Several systems are in place to control gas emissions, and annually, over 900,000,000 gallons of recycled water are used for cooling.
On 29 November 2011, The Inland Empire Utilities Agency has installed the first wind turbine in Rancho Cucamonga.
Rancho Cucamonga is served by Omnitrans Bus Service, Metrolink Train Service, and nearby Ontario International Airport. Interstate 15 and the relatively new 210 freeway extension run through Rancho Cucamonga as well as the historic U.S. Route 66. I-15 sits atop an elevated berm, and cuts a curve through the southeastern part of the city, isolating a mostly industrial area, a small shopping center, and several housing tracts from the larger part of the city. It then levels out toward the north, and forms part of the northeastern border with neighboring Fontana, before entering the Cajon Pass through the San Gabriel Mountains. Route 210 runs nearly straight east-west through the northern part of the city, roughly bisecting the residential communities of Alta Loma and Etiwanda. The western section of the freeway, as it passes through the city, sits in a trench, but east of Day Creek Boulevard, the freeway levels out, then becomes elevated as it passes the San Sevaine creek flood control basins, before passing into Fontana at the angled interchange with I-15.
UTI (Universal Technical Institute)
Archibald Avenue Library
Rancho Cucamonga has multiple public K-12 schools, operating under several different school districts, within its borders: Alta Loma School District, Central School District, Cucamonga School District, Etiwanda School District, and Chaffey Joint Union High School District. In addition to these, Rancho Cucamonga is the home to Chaffey College and satellite campuses of the University of La Verne, Cambridge College, University of Redlands, Everest College, and University of Phoenix, as well as the automotive trade school, Universal Technical Institute. Its newest addition is the private school Upland Christian Academy.
Alta Loma High School
Etiwanda High School
Los Osos High School
Rancho Cucamonga High School
The city of Rancho Cucamonga has two public libraries, with a combined total of over 200,000 volumes. The library at 7368 Archibald Avenue opened in 1994 and was remodeled in the summer of 2008. The Paul A. Biane library at 12505 Cultural Center Drive at the Victoria Gardens Cultural Center opened in August 2006. In 2013, the Rancho Cucamonga Public Library was a recipient of the National Medal for Museum and Library Services, the nation's highest honor that can be bestowed on a Library or Museum.
In popular culture
The name Cucamonga became well known to fans of Jack Benny's popular radio program, in which an announcer, voiced by Mel Blanc, would call out: "Train leaving on track five for Anaheim, Azusa and Cucamonga!" This running gag became so well known that it eventually led to a statue of Benny in Cucamonga.
Bugs Bunny cartoons feature numerous references to Cucamonga, which is perhaps not surprising given that Mel Blanc was Bugs Bunny's voice actor. In Mutiny On the Bunny, Cucamonga is one of the stickers on the boat at the end of the cartoon that Bugs is riding in. In My Bunny Lies Over The Sea, Bugs reads map directions that include "turn left at Cucamonga".
In Frosty the Snowman, the person at the ticket booth says "Rancho Cucamonga" as one of the stops of the train.
Rancho Cucamonga has been featured on the Comedy Central hit show Workaholics where it was nicknamed "Hollywood East". The main characters are said to live in the heart of Rancho Cucamonga.
Rancho Cucamonga is the setting of the movie Next Friday; the home owned by Uncle Elroy and Day Day is in Rancho Cucamonga.
The sixth track on the 1975 Frank Zappa and Captain Beefheart album Bongo Fury is titled "Cucamonga".
The sixth track on the Grateful Dead's 1974 album From the Mars Hotel is titled "Pride of Cucamonga".
In the SNL skit, "The Californians", Rancho Cucamonga is mentioned as the location of sand surfing in the episode hosted by Justin Bieber in early 2013.
Frank Zappa references Cucamonga on the Cucamonga Album: In the song Dear Jeeps Letters from Creepers, Cucamonga is named as the city where Jeepers is located.
In the episode Homie the Clown of The Simpsons, Krusty the Clown includes Cucamonga in a list of "funny place names" for his students to memorize, along with Walla Walla, Keokuk, and Seattle.
In the episode "Third Wheel" of "Wizards of Waverly Place", when he sees his students have destroyed their parade float, Mr. Laritate says: "What in the name of Rancho Cucamonga is going on here?"
The movie Parental Guidance references the minor league baseball team, "Rancho Cucamonga Quakes".
During the opening Keynote in Apple's 2014 WWDC, VP of Software Engineering Craig Federighi jokingly mentions that "OS X Rancho Cucamonga" was considered by the OS X developer team as a possible name for the 10.10 version release.
In the episode "James Van Der Beek; Steve-O" of "The Eric Andre Show", Eric disrupts a Cucamonga city council meeting during one of the show's skits.
Portal icon Inland Empire portal
List of people from Rancho Cucamonga, California
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Web site for City Hall and police department in Rancho
Wendy Leung, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin. "Wind turbine to bring inexpensive power to utilities agency - San Bernardino County Sun". Sbsun.com. Retrieved 2012-03-31.
Paula Emick. "Rancho Cucamonga". Arcadia Publishing. Retrieved 2013-07-09.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Rancho Cucamonga, California.
Rancho Cucamonga Redevelopment Agency
History of Rancho Cucamonga on official city web site
Rancho Cucamonga Library web site
The History of Casa de Rancho Cucamonga
Rancho Cucamonga Chamber of Commerce
Cucamonga Valley Water District
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