By Sophie L. Smith, Interim Deputy City Manager
Victorville has continued to experience strong growth for the High Desert in the second half of 2017. With an increasing population of 119,098 residents, our city continues to attract new retailers, manufacturers, and industrial development.
In mid-February 2017, the city announced that Cracker Barrel Old Country Store submitted plans to operate its first California location in Victorville. The southern-themed restaurant and gift shop becomes the newest expansion to the City’s Restaurant Row. Cracker Barrel is situated on 1.31 acres, with building space that encompasses 9,550 square feet of the 30,000-square foot expansion previously announced. Of the remaining square footage, retailers such as Starbucks, Nekter Juice, Which Which Sandwiches, Pieology, Ono Hawaiian BBQ, Café Rio, and the Habit Burger were also developed and began operating toward the end of 2017. The new developments are located adjacent and south of the first BJ’s Restaurant and Brewhouse in the Victor Valley, which opened its doors in early 2016.
Other retail announcements in 2017 included Sit’N Sleep’s grand opening of its 1,300-square foot store. located on Bear Valley Road near the Mall at Victor Valley. In May 2017, Harbor Freight Tools submitted tenant improvement plans to occupy an existing building on the corner of La Paz Drive and Seventh Street. The Calabasas-based company moved into an existing 15,000-square foot building in the shopping center anchored by the High Desert Indoor Swap Meet and the 99 Cents Only Store and opened its doors in February 2018. In October of 2017, the Victorville Planning Commission approved plans for two car washes that will be built along Bear Valley Road. The Speed Wash will be located on the southwest corner of Topaz, while a Jet Wash Express will be built at the intersection of Bear Valley and Pocoima Roads.
On August 9 2017, Valley Hi-Toyota opened its new facility after a 16-month renovation and expansion to its existing dealership. The dealership has expanded its previous 19,762 square foot showroom to 39,835 square feet. Toyota’s new facility features 47,643- square feet of building space. Additionally, RAM Truck Center previously opened its doors on March 5, 2017, at the AutoPark at Valley Center. The 7,261-square foot facility sits on approximately 2.66 acres. The dealership offers heavy duty RAM trucks such as the 1500, 2500 and 3500 models. The brand has been named Motor Trend Magazine’s truck of the year five times. The City of Victorville’s Auto Park at Valley Center, the only auto mall in the entire Victor Valley, includes nine premier dealerships for residents.
The hotel sector is also growing. Currently under construction on the west side of I-15, just south of the Nisqualli/La Mesa interchange, is a 106-room Hilton Home 2 Suites. Further north along the 15 Freeway on Mariposa Road and across from the Southwest Gas facility, Mariposa Land Development, LLC submitted plans to build a four-story, 85-room, Hampton Inn Hotel that will be located on a 1.56-acre lot.
In June 2017, we joined forces with our development partner, Stirling Development, to celebrate the completion of Distribution Center 18, a 370,023-square foot industrial facility at Southern California Logistics Airport. Distribution Center 18, which was leased to Newell Brands and Plastipak, is the second, large-scale industrial facility to be fully leased at SCLA in just one year’s time. Between city and private development at SCLA and Foxborough, we have leasing capacity for more than 4.5 million square feet of high-desirable, industrial space in Victorville.
In December 2017, Southern California Logistics Airport entered into a lease agreement with Karem Aircraft Inc. for space to serve as a testing area for a new aircraft rotor system for the beginning of the 2018 year. Karem, based in Lake Forest, CA, is an aircraft development and manufacturing company participating in the U.S. Army Joint Multi-Role Technology Demonstration (JMR-TD) program. Southern California Logistics Airport is one of the nation’s largest industrial airports. Its lack of commercial airline traffic, 360 days of “severe clear” weather, land capacity for expansive facilities and municipal utilities are key factors that have attracted major aerospace clients. State-of-the-art hangars of all sizes accommodate projects ranging from aircraft MRO companies to the painting of large, wide-body aircraft, including 747-800s, 777-300s and the 787 Dreamliner.
For more information about the City of Victorville, visit our website at www.victorvillecity.com or contact us at 760.955.5032.