Results tagged “moreno valley” from Raincross Square

Les Richter, former head of the now defunct Riverside International Raceway, passed away this weekend in Riverside. He was 79.

richter.193.jpg
Les Richter
(NASCAR.com)

RIR-logo-125.jpg
RIR logo

1969-rir-track.JPG
Post-1969 track configuration
(wikipedia)

1970s-rir-petty-allison-001-500.jpg
1970s
Richard Petty, Bobby Allison


rir-winston-400.jpg
Winston Cup Series

1982-rir-003-400.jpg
1982
Winston Cup Series

rir-control-tower-600.jpg
@1990
RIR control tower
(AP)

Probably no one else is more responsible for putting both Riverside International Raceway on the map as well as expanding stock car racing beyond its southeastern U.S. environs in the early days of NASCAR than Richter.

From 1963 to 1984, Richter ran the famed Riverside road course, one of the most challenging stops on the NASCAR circuit. For several years, RIR hosted either the first or final race on the NASCAR schedule as well as various other major races, including the Los Angeles Times Grand Prix.

Through the years, the track proved its versatility by hosting nearly every form of racing, including CART, IMSA, INDY, F1, Can-Am, Trans-Am, SCORE and IROC (one | two; whom Richter was a co-creator). Its proximity to Los Angeles also made it a prime location for advertising, television and movies. It also served as a testing track for automotive (one | two | three | four) and motorcycle companies.

RIR, which sat on the eastern edge of Riverside, was sold to Texas-based developer Fritz Duda in 1984 with the last major race in late 1988 and the track officially closing in early 1989.

Today, the 600-plus acres of the former racetrack include homes, apartments, parks and retail uses as part of Moreno Valley's master-planned Towngate development. The largest parcel, on which both the grandstands along Highway 60 and the famed "esses" (one | two | three) were once located, has been home to Moreno Valley Mall since 1992 (view overlay image here). The track's southern end, where the sweeping Turn 9 once was, is now comprised mostly of single-family residential.

Prior to managing the raceway, Richter was a football star at both UC Berkeley and the NFL's Los Angeles Rams for nine seasons, where he was a first-team, all-pro linebacker. After RIR, Richter went on to be a NASCAR executive for nearly 10 years until the early 1990s, when he was tapped by Roger Penske to oversee the development of California Speedway (now Auto Club Speedway) in Fontana, which opened in 1997.

Richter's influence went beyond the race track, however. He was a long-time Riverside resident and was involved in several civic organizations, including the city's influential Monday Morning Group.

Photos: Riverside International Raceway

Related

Previous

RIR_1963_cscc_cover.jpg
1963
SCCA magazine cover
(view overlay image here)
RIR_1970_AD_can_am.jpg
1970
Advertisement
RIR_1988_sign_last_weekend.jpg
1988
After the last major race
(Earlier view | 2002 view | 2003 view)


RIR_1963_MT_riv_GP_cover.jpg
1963
Riverside 500
RIR_1965_MT_riv_GP_cover.jpg
1965
Riverside 500
RIR_1969_LATimes_GP_cover.jpg
1969
LA Times
Grand Prix
RIR_1970_LATimes_GP_cover.jpg
1970
LA Times
Grand Prix
RIR_1980_LATimes_GP_cover.jpg
1980
LA Times
Grand Prix

A look at local history books

|
riv-patterson-colony-200.jpg
A Colony for California
Riverside Museum Press

arcadia-riv-1870-1940-200.jpg
Riverside 1870-1940
Arcadia Publishing

arcadia-riv-postcards-200.jpg
Riverside in
Vintage Postcards

Arcadia Publishing

arcadia-riv-thenannow-200.jpg
Riverside - Then & Now
Arcadia Publishing

Recently, local historian Hal Durian's weekly "Riverside Recollections" column spotlighted several local history books, including the very popular photo history books from Arcadia Publishing.

The Arcadia series includes several topics, including Images of America, Postcard History Series, Then & Now, Black America Series, Images of Sports, and Campus History Series.

Locally, several communities have been profiled in the Arcadia series, including: Riverside, Corona, Norco, Jurupa, Rubidoux, Moreno Valley, Hemet, San Jacinto, Menifee, Murrieta, Temecula, Palm Springs, San Bernardino, Redlands, Loma Linda, Montclair, Fontana, Rialto, Colton, Crestline, Lake Arrowhead, and Big Bear.

Several cities, such as Riverside, even have multiple books: Riverside 1870-1940, Riverside in Vintage Postcards, Riverside - Then & Now, Riverside's Mission Inn, Riverside's Camp Anza & Arlanza, and Arlington.

There are also a number of single-topic books: Norconian Resort, March Air Force Base, Kaiser Steel, Fontana, The Harris' Company, Lake Mathews & Gavilan Hills, and Temecula Wine Country, and Route 66 in California.

Beyond the Arcadia books, which offer mostly a cursory review of local history in a quick, easy-to-digest visual format, there are several other local history books of Riverside to take note of.

In particular, local author Joan H. Hall has done great work documenting several aspects of Riverside. Her "Adobes, Bungalows and Mansions of Riverside, California - Revisited" (with co-author Esther H. Klotz) and "Cottages, Colonials and Community Places of Riverside California" are two of the best such works, offering insight on many of Riverside's homes, buildings and sites.

Hall has also wrote (and/or co-authored) several other important local histories, including "A Citrus Legacy," "Through the Doors of the Mission Inn," "Pursuing Eden," and "History of Citrus in the Riverside Area."

Along with Hall's many books, two other books are worth noting for their more in-depth look at local history: Steve Lech's, "Along the Old Roads -- A History of the Portion of Southern California that Became Riverside County, 1772-1893," which gives background information for communities of Riverside County; and the late Tom Patterson's, "A Colony for California," which is a loose collection of both factual and anecdotal accounts of Riverside's first one hundred years (1870-1970).

Most of these books are found at area museums and many local shops, plus Barnes & Noble and Borders bookstores. They can also be found on Amazon.com (click here for direct links to each book). And of course, the Arcadia books can also be found at Arcadia Publishing.


(Harris') Gottschalks gone

|
riv-2009c-plaza-047-600.jpg
July 2009
Store closing

riv-2009c-plaza-044a-400.jpg
July 2009
Sign says it all

riv-2009c-plaza-065a-600.jpg
July 2009
Final day

rpl-yb-1964-novi_0002-800.jpg
1964
Back in the day

This past weekend saw the end of an era as Fresno-based Gottschalks closed for good on Sunday. For local folks, this also means an end to what once was the remnants of San Bernardino-based The Harris Co., which operated 7 department stores across Inland Southern California before the chain was sold to Gottschalks in 1998.

At the Riverside Plaza location, shoppers crowded parts of the first floor to buy merchandise that had been reduced up to 95% in the store's final days. Also up for sale were fixtures and even signage. Other areas of the selling floor had already been stripped bare of most merchandise.

The 3-story (plus basement) store will be transformed into a large-format Forever 21, which is expected to open sometime in August. Yet to be made public is exactly how much of the 204,000 sq. ft. former Gottschalks will be used by Forever 21. It's possible sub-leasing might take place.

As for both Gottschalks and Harris', what began in 1904 and 1905 respectively, is now history. The story behind both chains offer similar parallels, each having been founded by newly immigrated German families (Emil Gottschalk and Philip, Herman and Arthur Harris respectively).

Although Gottschalks grew much faster as a chain in the post-war years relative to Harris', both chains remained independently owned for many decades, thriving on local control and insights. For Harris', this led to a very loyal customer base, becoming what many considered the Marshall Field's of the Inland region.

By 1981, however, the smaller Harris' chain was facing stiffer competition against the larger department stores. It was at this time that third-generation members of the Harris family decided to sell the Inland Southern California chain to Spanish retailer El Corte Ingles.

And by the time of their 1998 merger -- in which the 7 local Harris' stores were re-branded as Harris'-Gottschalks -- both chains were beginning to struggle against the national department stores and discount chains. Within 10 years, signs of possible selling off to larger chains began to surface at Gottschalks, none of which managed to fully materialize. As such, it was a dire economy that finally ended the chain for good as Gottschalks filed for bankruptcy in early 2009.

In today's mega-franchise retailing environment, such personalized regional chains are a rarity (and likely to become even more so). And with Sunday's closure of the 58-store Gottschalks chain -- most of which were located in California -- the last remnants of Harris' is no more as well.

Related

Previous

Update

riv-2009c-plaza-072-400.jpg
July 2009
Last day!
riv-2009c-plaza-091a-600.jpg
July 2009
Empty cases
riv-2009c-plaza-070a-600.jpg
July 2009
Clearing out
riv-2009c-plaza-074a-400.jpg
July 2009
Display sales


riv-2009c-plaza-056a-400.jpg
July 2009
Escalator up
riv-2009c-plaza-097-600.jpg
July 2009
Nothing left
riv-2009c-plaza-105a-600.jpg
July 2009
RIP
riv-2009c-plaza-113-400.jpg
July 2009
'H' for Harris'



Sources: City of Riverside, The Press-Enterprise, Fresno Bee, Riverside Plaza, "The Harris Company" (Aimmee L. Rodriguez, Richard A. Hanks, Robin S. Hanks)


Local malls holding their own

|

On the heels of the worst holiday shopping season since 1969, the nation's retail landscape is likely headed for moderate changes as weak and battered retailers file for bankruptcy protection, close stores and/or shut down entirely. The transformation could see shoppers, both nationally and locally, greeted in the coming months with more than a few empty storefronts lining the halls and pathways of their favorite malls and shopping centers.

Thus far, former retail giants Circuit City, Mervyn's and KB Toys have each announced full closures, while regional department store Gottschalks recently filed for bankruptcy protection. Though the closures of the former have affected nearly every mall nationwide, Gottschalks -- if forced to close -- could spell additional trouble locally as the Fresno-based retailer has anchor stores at 7 area malls. (It could also bring a final end to a local retail empire that began in 1905 as The Harris Company).

Another potentially large impact locally is whether national mall owners will shed some or all local malls as they struggle under the weight of debt during a very tight credit market. With the possibility of reorganization on the horizon, Chicago-based General Growth Properties -- owner of four local malls, including three of the region's largest -- in particular could add additional stress to the local retail scene.

So, where does this recent -- and potentially future -- turbulence leave local malls? Let's take a closer look at each.


sb-2006-carousel-050.jpg
2006
Carousel Mall

Carousel Mall - San Bernardino

For all intents and purposes, this mall is already dead. Opened with great fanfare as Central City Mall in 1972, the 37-year-old, Victor Gruen-designed center began its decline in the mid-1990s, not long after being rechristened as the Carousel Mall. In 2000, the flagship Harris' department store closed (it had opened independently in 1927). The remaining anchors, Montgomery Ward and JCPenney departed soon thereafter (2002 and 2003 respectively). Although a planned mixed-use redevelopment has stalled, it's not likely the few remaining stores will survive the current retail environment.


red-mall-002.jpg
2001
Redlands Mall

Redlands Mall

Tiny by mall standards, the Redlands Mall is likely to be the next area mall to fall -- particularly if General Growth Properties reorganizes and/or Gottschalks closes. Such a closure would leave the 32-year-old mall without its only department store. However, this may not be such a bad thing as it could expedite pending redevelopment of the downtown block into a mixed-use project that will both complement and enhance the existing retail and commercial uses on State Street.


hem-2003-mall-001.jpg
2003
Hemet Valley Mall

Hemet Valley Mall

HVM is another relatively tiny mall that could potentially be greatly impacted by Gottschalks' bankruptcy. A closure by Gottschalks here would leave the 29-year-old mall with two anchors (JCPenney and Sears). However, with the Hemet-San Jacinto area primed for future growth (and still relatively underserved retail-wise), it's doubtful an empty anchor would remain unused over the long haul. The center's biggest threat is likely to be any future large-scale retail development that may occur nearby in the coming years.


sb-2006f-inland-009.jpg
2006
Inland Center

Inland Center - San Bernardino

With the fall of Mervyn's, which had been slated to fill the shuttered Broadway/Macy's, and the recent bankruptcy announcement by Gottschalks, this mall is probably the largest local mall potentially on shaky ground. The 43-year-old center could very well end the year with two of four anchor pads empty (leaving Macy's and Sears). However, with the all-but-final demise of nearby Carousel Mall nearly complete, coupled with potentially having two available department store pads, Inland Center could also have a slight advantage redevelopment-wise when the economy picks back up.


cor-2006f-doslagos-012.jpg
2006
Promenade Shops

The Promenade Shops at Dos Lagos - Corona

Another small, non-traditional mall, The Promenade Shops in Corona could be the newest center that's struggling the most. Depending upon how the national retail landscape shakes out, the center's lack of large department stores could either hurt or help. In the short term, the 3-year-old center could very well see some store closings. However, its location within a high-growth and higher-end demographic corridor likely assures a future of some sort (though it could use help increasing its visibility). It also has that unique lake/bridge feature to boot. Even so, its biggest threat is the nearby Galleria at Tyler in Riverside, which includes a Nordstrom, Macy's and over 100 more stores than does Dos Lagos.


mv-2006f-mall-026.jpg
2006
Moreno Valley Mall

Moreno Valley Mall at Towngate

Already impacted by last year's closure of its Gottschalks store (which remains empty), the Moreno Valley Mall could see significant impacts from any potential reorganization of General Growth Properties. The 17-year-old center was slated to receive a Steve & Barry's, until that company joined the ranks of shuttered retailers last fall. However, with three other anchors -- Macy's, JCPenney and Sears -- the mall, which has struggled in the past, remains relatively healthy. Likewise, future long-term growth to the east and south favor its survival.


riv_2005_plaza_ss_041.jpg
2005
Riverside Plaza

Riverside Plaza

Another one-anchor mall that could be greatly impacted by any potential closure of Gottschalks is the venerable Riverside Plaza. As the region's oldest, large-scale shopping center, the 52-year-old, Victor Gruen Associates-designed Plaza has been performing well since its third incarnation opened in 2005 (which is less mall and more dining and entertainment). On one hand, a closure of Gottschalks would offer a unique opportunity for just the right anchor to step in and assume the 204,000 sq. ft., 4-level building (maybe an IKEA?). However, it could lead to the demolishing of the region's oldest, "modern" department store (and first, large-scale Harris' to be built beyond the flagship store in downtown San Bernardino). Yet, among the smaller malls of the region, Riverside Plaza is most likely to weather the turbulence.


ont-mills-016.jpg
2001
Ontario Mills

Ontario Mills

Though more outlet center than traditional mall, the gigantic Ontario Mills recently had its own brush with fate as the beleaguered Mills Corp was acquired by Simon Property Group in early 2007. It's difficult to say exactly how Ontario Mills will be affected by the retail downturn as its size -- and lower-grade store makeup -- is probably as much an asset as it is a liability. In some sense, the lack of traditional department store anchors might be beneficial. Likewise, the area surrounding the 13-year-old center has become a strong magnet for peripheral commercial uses, attracting everything from major big-box retailers and traditional strip centers to mid-range hotels. But this has led to unfriendly traffic levels (and very unfriendly pedestrian atmosphere) and possibly over-saturation. However, its location at the highly visible junction of the I-10 and I-15 likely assures its long-term future -- in one form or another.


chs-2008f-shoppes-024a.jpg
2008
The Shoppes

The Shoppes at Chino Hills

About the size of Corona's Promenade Shops but with the look of Victoria Gardens, The Shoppes at Chino Hills will likely weather the current retail turbulence. Its location adjacent to the city's new (and future) civic center coupled with the area's high-end demographics likely assures a future for the small, 1-year-old center. However, its lack of traditional department stores and insufficient parking could be a significant hindrance. As such, the center's biggest threat is the nearby Montclair Plaza, which offers both a Nordstrom and Macy's (and many more stores).


mon-2008f-plaza-sign-002a.jpg
2008
Montclair Plaza

Montclair Plaza

As one of the area's largest and oldest indoor malls, the Montclair Plaza recently underwent a moderate interior renovation. With anchors Nordstrom, Macy's, JCPenney and Sears, it has traditionally been one of the strongest malls in the region. Yet, the 41-year-old center does have an empty anchor (the former Broadway/Macy's) and could be impacted by any potential reorganization of its owner (General Growth Properties). It also faces stiff competition from newer, higher-end developments nearby (Shoppes at Chino Hills and Victoria Gardens). However, the mall is more than likely to weather anything excepting a major transformation of the retail landscape.


riv-2006f-galleria-058.jpg
2006
Galleria at Tyler

Galleria at Tyler - Riverside

With anchors Nordstrom, Macy's and JCPenney, the Galleria at Tyler is both one of the largest and strongest traditional malls in the region. Solidified by recent expansions that included AMC Theaters, Yard House, The Cheesecake Factory and PF Chang's, the 39-year-old center is likely to weather anything but a major retail shake up. Yet, it too is owned by General Growth Properties and also has an existing empty anchor (the former Broadway/Macy's). However, its freeway-adjacent location between higher-end demographics in both Riverside and Corona more than likely assures the center's long-term viability.


tem-2006f-mall-008.jpg
2006
The Promenade

The Promenade in Temecula

Probably the most insulated mall in the region, Temecula's Promenade stands on relatively solid ground. With four anchors -- Macy's-north, Macy's-south, JCPenney and Sears -- and few large-scale competitors nearby, the 10-year-old center dominates the southwestern Riverside County retail market. As with Montclair Plaza and Galleria at Tyler, the Promenade will withstand anything but a major retail shake up. And, along with Victoria Gardens, it will likely be in the running for the region's next Nordstrom.


cuc-2006f-vicgardens-038.jpg
2006
Victoria Gardens

Victoria Gardens - Rancho Cucamonga

Probably the strongest and certainly the most unique mall in the region, Victoria Gardens is likely to weather most anything excepting a major transformation of the retail landscape. Its solid reputation, above-average store mix and pleasant outdoor atmosphere puts this center on relatively solid ground. It also contains the city's cultural center (with library and playhouse). The only foreseeable scenario potentially affecting the 5-year-old center would be the closing or consolidation of one or both Macy's anchors (one | two). Such closures could potentially leave the 3-anchor mall with a single anchor (JCPenney). However, its highly likely a retailer the likes of Nordstrom would quickly snap up any empty anchor store.



Related

Sources: Los Angeles Times, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin, The Press-Enterprise


Out & About - 10/14/2008

|
OA_20081012-200.jpg
Flash: Out & About slideshow

riv-2008c-mus-rir-001a-200.jpg
2008
Incorporating the old RIR logo

riv-2008c-marb-mus-098-600.jpg
2008
March Field Air Museum

riv-2008c-marb-mus-054-600.jpg
2008
An original WWI-era plane
traced back to March Field

This past weekend saw us check the status on a few ongoing projects in downtown Riverside, including Regency Tower and Main Street Pedestrian Mall as both projects continue moving along. We also managed to take a nice snapshot overlooking downtown as well as take in two local museums.

First up was a visit to the Riverside International Automotive Museum in Riverside. Located in a business park near Hunter Park, the museum pays homage to the former Riverside International Raceway, which hosted major races on the eastern edge of town from 1957 - 1988. On display are posters, videos and various RIR memorabilia -- including a refrigerator from the driver's lounge. The museum also houses 3 Indy Eagle cars from the track's most prolific racer, Dan Gurney.

But more than just honoring RIR, the museum has a small collection of memorabilia from the former Ontario Motor Speedway (which held races from 1970 to 1980 on land where the new arena now stands). Likewise, several sports cars are on display, ranging from Ferrari and Maserati to Indy cars. It's also a working museum with race car restoration projects in the works.

Photos: Riverside International Raceway

Related



__________________


Next was a stop at March Field Air Museum adjacent to I-215 in southeastern Riverside. Located on the western edge of March Air Reserve Base, the museum is comprised of a few hangar-like structures and several outdoor aircraft displays.

An interior exhibit area offers historical displays on March Field -- which celebrated its 90th anniversary in 2008 -- as well as the nation's major wars. Several other displays include the Tuskegee Airmen, Gen. Jimmy Doolittle, SAC Commander Gen. Curtis LeMay and the International Combat Camera Association. The museum also includes a short film on the history of March Field -- the oldest Air Force base on the west coast -- and it's involvement within the nation's modern military.

Outside on the museum's flightline are over 50 aircraft, including an SR-71 Blackbird, B-17 Flying Fortress, B-29 Superfortress, B-52D Stratofortress, F-4 Phantom, F-14 Tomcat, F-15 Eagle and KC-135 Stratotanker. Also on display are 4 Soviet MiG planes and a small hanger dedicated to the P-38.

The museum is also a working museum, with several hangers set up for ongoing restoration projects. Future plans at the museum include expansion for more interior exhibit space and a re-working of the exterior flightline.

When visiting March Field Air Museum, be sure to make time for a few solemn moments across the freeway at Riverside National Cemetery, which was the former site of Camp Haan during World War II.

Related


March Field AirFest 2008

|

This weekend, the skies over Inland Southern California will reverberate with the thundering sounds of the USAF Thunderbirds as the team performs during "AirFest 2008" at March Air Reserve Base.

mafb-2004-airfest-002-600.jpg
2004
AirFest 2004

1920s-mafb-001-500.jpg
1920s
March Field

1940-usaf-march-field-600.jpg
1940
March Field
USAF

msn-2008-map-marcharb-600.jpg
2008
Aerial view
(note the outline of
the base's original quad)
MS Virtual Earth

The base, celebrating its 90th year, will once again open up the gates to the public during its annual open house/air show. The event, which attracts upwards of 250,000 people, has become the largest such air show in Southern California.

In addition to the Thunderbirds, flyovers will include the F-22, F-18, KC-135, C-130 as well an impressive short runway landing/takeoff demo performed by a March ARB-based Globemaster C-17. Also scheduled are precision parachute teams from the US Army "Golden Knights" and Canadian Skyhawks, a Red Bull MiG-17 aerial demonstration and several stunt pilots and vintage aircraft. On the tarmac will be over 50 aircraft available for up-close inspection, including several open for "walk-thrus."

Gates will be open 8:00 a.m. - 6:30 p.m., Sat. May 3 and Sun. May, 4. Free parking is available on base grounds.

March ARB was initially established in 1918 during World War I as Alessandro Flying Training Field under the command of the fledgling Army Air Service (later to become the Army Air Corps.) The base, which is the oldest Air Force base west of the Mississippi, immediately took the name March Field in honor of 2nd Lt. Peyton C. March Jr.

Through the years, the base was home to many of the nation's most celebrated pilots and commanders, including Hoyt Vandenberg, Curtis LeMay, Nathan Twining and Henry "Hap" Arnold. With its close proximity to Hollywood, March also played host to Bob Hope's first major USO show in May 1941.

Following World War II, March became part of the newly-formed Tactical Air Command (TAC), housing the 1st Fighter Wing for the Army Air Force. Upon establishment of the US Air Force as an independent branch in 1948, the base was renamed March Air Force Base, becoming a major Strategic Air Command (SAC) bomber base and headquarters for the 15th Air Force. For several years, B-29s, B-52s and KC-135s dominated the tarmac -- and the overhead skies.

In 1982, KC-10s replaced the last of March's B-52s as the primary mission changed from bombardment to air refueling and support. In 1996, as part of the Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) process, the base was renamed March Air Reserve Base.

Today, as the largest air reserve base in the nation, March ARB supports all branches of the US military. The base is home to the 4th Air Force HQ and several other units, including the 4th Combat Camera Squadron, the 163d Reconnaissance Wing, the American Forces Radio and Television Service, the Southwest Interdiction Unit of U.S. Customs as well as an air wing of Homeland Security.

With Southern California's longest paved runway, the now joint-use facility includes March GlobalPort, which serves as the West Coast hub for cargo shipper DHL.

Related

Previous

Sources: March Air Reserve Base, March Field Museum, USAF, WikiPedia


Then & Now - Galleria at Tyler: Part Two

|

Since its opening as the single-level Tyler Mall in 1970 and re-christening as the two-level Galleria at Tyler in 1991, Riverside's primary shopping center remains one of Inland Southern California's top retail destinations. Currently undergoing its third major expansion, the Galleria at Tyler has flourished as both the city and the Inland region have grown and prospered.

Below is Part 2 in a brief history of the Riverside mall. Part 1 can be found here.

riv-galleria-027a-200.jpg
QUICK FACTS - 1991
Nordstrom Opening: September 6
Mall Re-Opening: October 17
Expansion Cost: $100 million
Construction: 17 months
Project Manager: Donahue-Schriber,
Newport Beach, CA
General Contractor: Charles Pankow
Builders, Ltd., Pasadena, CA
Nordstrom Architect: Callison
Architecture, Seattle
Anchors: The Broadway, J.C. Penney,
May Co. (1973), Nordstrom (1991)
Stores: 160
Size: 1.1 million sq. ft. (GLA)


1988
Expansion plans
Donahue-Schriber


1988
Interior depiction
Donahue-Schriber


1990
Construction
Donahue-Schriber


2006
Similar view


QUICK FACTS - 2007
Anchors:
Nordstrom, Macy's, J.C. Penney
Primary Out-Parcels:
Barnes & Noble (2001)
The Cheesecake Factory (2006)
PF Chang's (2006)
AMC Theaters (2007)
Yard House (2007)
Elephant Bar (2007)
Robbins Bros. (2007)
Tenants:
175-plus
Size:
1.2 million sq. ft. (GLA)


July 2007
North Village


2006
Galleria at Tyler
(pre-North Village expansion)
MS Virtual Earth

1980s - Growing Pains

By the early 1980s, both residents and city officials alike began voicing opinions about the lack of an upscale department store at the then Tyler Mall. And although Buffum's considered the area in the late-1960s and Bullock's officials had recently began scouting the area, neither brand had yet committed to building a local store.

In 1985, Seattle-based Nordstrom took the initiative and began work on the region's first upscale department store in nearby Montclair. And by late 1986, following a successful opening at Montclair Plaza, Nordstrom began scouting for a second area location. The upscale retailer took particular interest in Montclair's sibling mall in Riverside, which was in the midst of planning a similar expansion. In April 1987, Nordstrom made it official -- a store was planned for an expanded Tyler Mall. However, the mall expansion would be delayed by local politics -- and local competition.

Earlier in the decade, Riverside annexed the site for a proposed regional mall on the city's eastern edge near the soon-to-be city of Moreno Valley. The mall, dubbed Canyon Springs Fashion Mall*, was proposed by Riverside-based T&S Development, developers of Riverside's highly-successful Canyon Crest Towne Centre. The two-level, 1.3 million sq. ft. mall (with 6 to 8 department stores) was part of the master-planned "Canyon Springs"* development proposed on 900 acres owned by T&S at the conjunction of Highway 60 and Interstate 215.

Although department stores Bullock's and Harris' eventually signed letters of intent for the proposed mall, T&S encountered several delays in obtaining financing. And by the late-1980s, in the face of stiff competition from another proposed mall in adjacent Moreno Valley as well as the Tyler project, T&S essentially joined forces with a small, but vocal group of Riverside residents opposed to the Tyler expansion, which gained final approval in January 1989:

The Riverside City Council, seeking to boost revenues and fulfill a community desire for upscale shopping, yesterday voted 6-1 to approve plans to nearly double the size of the Tyler Mall, including construction of a Nordstrom and J.W. Robinson's.
The Press-Enterprise - February 1, 1989

On the same day in March 1989, both T&S and the local residents group filed separate lawsuits aiming to block the expansion. But by December 1989, after key setbacks in court -- including the revelation of a thinly-veiled link between the two groups -- both lawsuits were dropped following out-of-court settlements, thus paving the way for expansion to finally begin.

(T&S suffered an even greater setback with the eventual pullout of Bullock's and the jumping ship of Harris' to the then-proposed Moreno Valley Mall at Towngate, which opened in late 1992 directly across Day Street from the proposed Canyon Springs mall. The land-rich, but cash-poor company ultimately dissolved. Today, portions of the Canyon Springs development include assorted big-box retail, offices and vacant land.)

1991 - Galleria at Tyler

After nearly 5 years of planning, negotiating, battling lawsuits and fending off competition from two proposed malls on the eastern edge of town, ground was broken in May 1990 for a $100 million expansion for the 20-year-old Tyler Mall. Included in the 500,000 square foot expansion were a second-level of mall shops, a 3-level, 164,000 sq. ft. Nordstrom department store and separate 4-level and 2-level parking structures:

"Tyler, upon completion, will appear to be a brand new mall...Everything will change. Nothing will be the same. Every piece of wall and floor will change."
William Kenney, V.P. of Donahue-Schriber
The Press-Enterprise - May 20, 1990

Expansion plans for the mall closely followed those undertaken in 1985 at Montclair Plaza, also owned at the time by Newport Beach-based Donahue-Schriber. However, unlike Montclair's expansion, one major change would be how the second level of mall shops was added.

In Montclair, the second level was placed directly on the existing roof resulting in a taller overall structure. However, this also caused the new level to be a few feet higher than the second-story levels of the existing department stores. This required a gradual lowering of the mall's new second level walkways immediately heading into the department stores (including a customized mini-escalator heading into The Broadway).

In Riverside, a relatively new technique was used in which the second level would be suspended from a truss system designed to rest a few feet below the existing roof level. As such, the ceilings in the existing mall stores had to be lowered to accommodate the newly-built second level above. The result was matching floor levels and a shorter overall structure. It was more expensive, but according to Donahue-Schriber, was less disruptive to both shoppers and merchants as fewer overall support columns were needed (the added weight was distributed across the new truss system).

Seventeen months after construction began, an expanded Tyler Mall officially opened on October 17, 1991 as the newly-christened Galleria at Tyler. Shoppers eagerly welcomed the doubling of mall shops (from 85 to 160), more parking and, of course, the long-awaited Nordstrom**.

Plans originally called for two more department stores (for a total of 6), one of which was to be Robinson's. However, the 1993 merger with May Co. -- resulting in Robinson's-May -- altered those plans. To date, neither the 5th nor 6th department stores have yet to be added. (In fact, the 2006 consolidation of Robinson's-May into Macy's resulted in Macy's relocating to the opposite end of the mall into the former Robinson's-May building.)

In 2001, Barnes & Noble replaced the original United Artists cinema located on Hughes Alley adjacent to the 91 Freeway. The theater, which originally opened with 2 theatres, was quickly doubled to 4 shortly after the mall opened. A 1978 proposal to double again to 8 screens failed to receive city approval. By the mid-1990s, the small theater was struggling to compete against the rise of mega-multiplexes. Various mall expansion plans floated in the late 1990s and early 2000s envisioned the UA 4 being replaced with a modern multiplex (including plans for a subterranean version).

2006/07 - Expansion


In July 2006, the Galleria at Tyler embarked on its third major expansion. The plans, which are taking place at out-parcels at opposing ends of the mall, include a multiplex theater, restaurants, additional retail and an expanded parking structure.

First to open in late 2006 were The Cheesecake Factory and PF Chang's restaurants, both on the south end of the mall. And by July 2007, work was well underway at the north end of the mall property for what is being dubbed "North Village," which will house an AMC 16 theater multiplex, Elephant Bar and Yard House restaurants, a Robbins Bros. store as well as additional shops. Architects for the project are MBH Architects of Alameda, CA. Completion is slated for late 2007.

Elsewhere in the mall, the tenant mix continues to be updated. Recent additions include specialty shops the likes of Metropark, LoveSac, Coach and Aldo. In November 2007, Swedish fashion retailer H&M is set to open a 20,000 sq. ft. store at the mall's north end.

Yet to be determined is the fate of the distinctive 3-story, former Broadway/Macy's department store located near the "North Village" expansion. The building's cantilevered style of architecture showcases department store flair and design from a now bygone era. Its unique design was used only one other time for a sister store*** that opened in 1972 in Citrus Heights (Sacramento), Calif. (Correction: A third version of this design was used for a Fresno, Calif., Weinstock's store that also opened in 1970.)

Speculation for the now vacant building ranges from signing another department store -- such as Macy's sister store Bloomingdale's -- to revamping the 164,000 sq. ft. interior into micro shops (which, at the very least, would preserve the building). Another possibility, of course, is a complete tear down for further mall expansion. Though we'd definitely hate to see a vacant anchor for an extended number of years, we'd also hate to lose such an iconic architectural landmark. Moreover, what would become of the time capsule buried in 1970 by The Broadway, which states it's to be reopened in 2070?

We suspect only time -- and future department store mergers -- will tell.

Related


2006
Macy's (south)

2006
Macy's (north)

2006
Nordstrom



2007
J.C. Penney

2006
Interior view


* 1988 / Greater Riverside Chamber of Commerce
** 1991 / Nordstrom, Inc.
*** Photo courtesy of Jim Van Schaak

Sources: Galleria at Tyler, General Growth Properties, Donahue-Schriber, City of Riverside, The Press-Enterprise, Riverside Public Library, Greater Riverside Chambers of Commerce


March Field AirFest 2006

|

This weekend marks the return of the USAF Thunderbirds to March Air Reserve Base near Riverside. The precision flying team has been making regular stops at the base's air shows for many years, the last being 2004.

This weekend's show marks the homecoming of sorts for one of the Thunderbird pilots, Maj. Nicole Malachowski, who spent part of her childhood in Upland. She's also the first female pilot in the history of the Thunderbirds. Many of her relatives will be at this weekend's airshow.

"It's exciting to be back in Southern California," Malachowski said Thursday after a practicing with the Thunderbirds over March, Riverside, Moreno Valley and Perris. "It's overwhelming and exhilarating and I'm enjoying this."

The Press-Enterprise

mafb-2004-westover-C5A-003-500.jpg
2004
March Field AirFest

mafb-2004-tbirds-001a-500.jpg
2004
USAF Thunderbirds

Included in this weekend's airshow will be flight demonstrations of the Air Force's primary aircraft, including the F-15E "Strike Eagle," F-16 "Viper," C-17 "Globemaster," C-130 "Hercules," B-52 "Stratofortress," KC-135 "Stratotanker," as well as the F-22 "Raptor," and F-117 "Stealth Fighter."

A U.S. Navy F-18 "Hornet" and Russian MiG-21 are also part of the flight demonstrations along with historic Air Force aircraft B-17, B-25, P-38 and P-51. Vietnam War-vintage helicopters, precision parachute teams and stunt pilots help round out the flight demostration activities. Numerous aircraft will also be on display -- and for walk-thrus -- along March's large tarmac.

The airshow is the only such USAF show held in Greater Los Angeles and is usually one of the largest in the country. And due to the proximity to the Thunderbirds' home base of Nellis AFB in Las Vegas, family members of many of the pilots will be making the trek to March ARB for this weekend's airshow.

The March Field AirFest is Saturday and Sunday, April 29-30, from 8 a.m. - 5:30 p.m., with the Thunderbirds performing at 3:15 p.m. both days. Admission is free.

Photo Gallery: AirFest 2004

Related


RIR

|

Fifteen years ago (1988), Riverside International Raceway (RIR) threw the checkered flag for the last time.

RIR-logo-125.jpg
RIR logo

RIR_1970_LATimes_GP_cover-450.jpg
1970
Riverside Int'l Raceway

RIR_1973_IROC_porsches-300.jpg
1973
Riverside Int'l Raceway

font-cal-sign-001a-400.jpg
2001
California Speedway
Fontana

Long regarded as the most demanding road course track on the major racing circuits, the legendary track saw its share of race icons challenge its 9-turn, 3.2 mile track, burning many a transmission in the process. Dan Gurney, A.J. Foyt, Roger Penske, Richard Petty, Dale Earnhardt, Mario Andretti, Cale Yarborough, Al and Bobby Unser, Bill Elliot, Rick Mears, Johnny Rutherford, and Parnelli Jones -- among others -- all raced at the track.

Of them, local-boy Dan Gurney practically owned the arduous course. Gurney won 5 of the 9 'Motor Trend Riverside 500' held at the track in the during the 1960s.

The track held numerous races in its 31-year history, including the inaugural International Race of Champions (IROC) race in 1973. Everything from NASCAR, Indy, IMSA, and F1 to local car club races. It even housed the Jim Russell British School of Motor Racing.

Sadly, all started coming to an end in the mid-1980s as the city of Moreno Valley experienced a phenomenal population boom, making the land much more valuable for development.

Today, the site is home to the Moreno Valley Mall at Towngate and a host of other uses. Some of the site remains undeveloped, but the final vestige to RIR came crumbling down in 2002 with the removal of the Raceway's former marquee during construction of a Lowe's Home Improvement warehouse.

However, the newly built Towngate Park Community Center -- located in the area of the former track's Turn 9 -- celebrates the raceway with various memorabilia on display. A plan to construct a permanent memorial to RIR at Towngate Park is currently in progress. And, a complete historical accounting of Riverside International Raceway was recently published.

In 1997, a new, modern oval track opened in nearby Fontana. Dubbed, California Speedway, the Fontana track carries on Southern California's racing heritage. Not coincidentally, the track was built by Roger Penske and is run by Les Richter, both familiar faces at the Riverside track.

So, in honor of the once world-famous RIR, a new photo gallery is now online. The gallery consists of various race program covers, a few photos of the site today, as well as an Autoweek article marking the track's closure.

(this site is heavily indebted to the following 2 sites for most of the images contained within the RIR gallery: http://www.progcovers.com and http://home.san.rr.com/fsheff/rirpicts.htm)

Sources: The Press-Enterprise, WikiPedia


Find recent content on the RXSQ Main Index or look in the Master Archives to find all content.

Follow Us


Make Custom Gifts at CafePress








Powered by Movable Type 4.35-en
version: 4.35-en
  • Subscribe to feed Subscribe to this blog's feeds: Atom

Categories

Archives

Tags

Recent Comments

RXSQ on RIR: @Chris -- Indeed, it is sad that the raceway is go ...

Chris Miller on RIR: So sad that the raceway had to come down for a mal ...

Special

thumb-cafepress-001-250.jpg

Got Riverside? RaincrossSquare is now on CafePress! We are offering a limited number of products -- such as framed prints, postcards and calendars -- using locally-themed images and graphics. Please feel free to browse our online shop.

Photo Request: We're looking for iconic shots and city views taken between 1940 - 1990 in and around Riverside, especially those where the landscape has significantly changed. Read more...

Photos

Photo Galleries
Downtown | City

Photo Pool
www.flickr.com
items in Raincross Square View/add photos: Raincross Square photo pool

Of Interest























Local Links