Menifee, Lake Elsinore Join to Celebrate Holland Road Project

Lake Elsinore Mayor Bob Magee (third from left) and Menifee Mayor Scott Mann join other city officia...

Lake Elsinore Mayor Bob Magee (third from left) and Menifee Mayor Scott Mann join other city officials in the ribbon cutting for the newly paved Holland Road Tuesday.
City officials from Menifee and Lake Elsinore gathered Tuesday afternoon at the side of a rural road that has become somewhat of a famous spot in recent months.

Joined by several other dignitaries, Menifee Mayor Scott Mann and Lake Elsinore Mayor Bob Magee took part in a ribbon cutting ceremony to officially announce the opening of a freshly paved stretch of Holland Road on the border of both cities.

The narrow, hilly section of Holland Road between Murrieta Road to the east and the new Herk Bouris Elementary School on the west was a bumpy dirt roadway until just over a week ago, when crews from developer Pardee Homes paved the road just in time for the re-opening of the school after the holidays.

Tuesday's ceremony signaled a major accomplishment in an issue that involved two city governments, parents who complained about a difficult driving route to the school, and complex legal issues involving local land owners.

"This is a good example of the results you can have when city governments work in partnership," Magee told a small crowd gathered at the site. "This was a potential problem (Menifee City Councilman) Tom Fuhrman foresaw years ago, and with the opening of the new school, it came to pass. Something had to be done, and this is a testament to good neighbor politics and the work of Pardee Homes."

Fuhrman, whose Wooden Nickel Ranch property includes a small section of the road, had warned since last summer of the dangers of leaving the road as is when traffic increased during the school year. The narrow width of the road and lack of pedestrian access remains a problem, but for now, the improvements have been well received.

"This is a big step, but it's just a temporary fix," Mann said. "There are steps in place to move forward and put in curbs and gutters ... This is a good example of what happens when city staffs work together -- both past and present -- to get something important done."

Mike Taylor of Pardee Homes, whose company built the school and adjacent homes on the Lake Elsinore side of the border, said he considered this a landmark day for those who will use the improved road.

"I'd like to thank both city councils and mayors for coming together to help make this happen," Taylor said. "The real winners are the kids and parents who drive this road every day.

"When they sold us the school site, I gave them my word we would work day and night to get the road paved. This is a big day for all of us."