City Seeks Input on Another Development Plan at 'Missing Link'

The outlined section shown here between the planned Menifee Road extension and a hillside would ...

The outlined section shown here between the planned Menifee Road extension and a hillside would be the site of the Chaparral Senior Apartments. The previously planned El Dorado housing development would be built on the vacant lot on the other (east) side of the road.
Today it is a quiet, barren patch of land, about 100 acres on the eastern base of a hill in Menifee. Down the middle runs a partially graded path that has long been intended to connect sections of Menifee Road that dead-end at Simpson Road to the north and near Aldergate Drive to the south.

Off to one side of the "road" stands a row of giant sewer pipes, brought on site but still awaiting development. A young girl walks carefully along the edge of the path, taking the shortcut not available to motorists. A dirt biker roars past, sending squirrels scattering.

It's a small patch of rural Menifee amid the development that has marked this town's growth to more than 80,000. Yet if all projects are approved and the housing market continues to improve, this area will become a densely populated residential neighborhood split up the middle by a vital north-south thoroughfare.

Last week, it was reported here that city officials received a commitment from the Rancon Group to build a half-mile stretch of Menifee Road that will fill in the so-called "missing link" between Simpson Road and Aldergate. This would be the first phase in the construction of the long-delayed El Dorado development (right), a 48-acre tract planned for 269 single-family lots east of the road, according to plans listed on rancongroup.com. That tract is already laid out with at least one access road paved.

Now, the City of Menifee has announced a public meeting for this Tuesday, June 25 at 5 p.m. to inform residents about plans for an adjacent development -- a 253-unit senior apartment complex planned for the west side of the road, at the base of the hill.

The 46-acre Chaparral Apartment project (site shown at left) is in the