The Menifee Gorilla; An American Dream

There is a new scary word for some folks here in Riverside County and other parts of the U.S., eminent domain. Last month the U.S. Supreme Court delivered a ruling allowing the government to conduct a land grab on private land for business development. This means that if your home or business is in the path of the raging urban sprawling bull it could end up being a parking lot for the next Costco.
One has to wonder how the long time locals of Menifee Valley feel about the thousand pound gorilla in their living rooms in the form of a bulldozer bearing down on their farms, dairy's and countryside homes. My understanding is that not long ago Menifee was a "one horse town" so-to-speak, and quite frankly some folks liked it that way. You don't have to live here long before you start hearing how the way things used to be; with the dirt roads, the clean air and that cherished (by some) countrified smell.

I watch the earth-movers excavating farm land, the paving of dirt roads, and sit back in fervent anticipation for the blasting that is sure to take place when the city punches thru the hillside behind Briggs Road to extend Newport Road out to Winchester.

The feeling of excitement for some as the area gives birth to a new era is evident. For others it's a setting sun that will only exist in the memories of the few, and may bring them to pack the wagons and head for quieter pastures.

Many of us are pining for a Starbucks off Newport Road that we can hit before work on the way out to the freeway, or a family restaurant close by that isn't a bar or a drive thru Jack-in-the-Box. My family and I, as many of you are, are used to convenience. Let's face it, I'm a city boy, from a place where a dirt road was what got you to the campground and a small town was place without a Nordstrom. My family and I are here in Menifee for the investment. We chose this area for it's monitorial potential in our home, for it's charm and existing and developing character. I'm a man with a family and a dream, just as the many who lived here before me. My family and I came here to live the American dream of owning our own home. It’s unfortunate that our dream has to be at the expense of another's.


  1. Actually, it wasn't that long ago when "eminent domain" was on the minds of some here in Menifee, regarding the "Valley Rainbow Interconnect".

    San Diego Gas & Electric (SDG&E) had been trying to find ways to deliver more electricity to people in San Diego County. They conceived an idea to run 31 miles of power lines from Southern California Edison's power station on Menifee Road & Highway 74, down to SDG&E's power station in Rainbow.

    This would require the creation of steel poles and lattice towers stretching down parts of eastern Menifee, Winchester, and down beyond. There was a petition drive here against it, arguing all sorts of reasons why it was a bad idea (and of course none of those reasons mentioned it would lower property values).

    In the end, SDG&E pulled back on this project, and I think they're now trying to run lines through Cleveland National Forest, along the Santa Ana Mountains.