City of Riverside and Community Partners Launch $9 million of Smart Growth Projects in Eastside Neighborhood

Published: 06/30/2021



June 30, 2021



Phil Pitchford

Public Information Officer


[email protected]



City of Riverside and Community Partners Launch $9 million of Smart Growth Projects in Eastside Neighborhood

State Transformative Climate Communities (TCC) grant to pay for solar installation, tree planting, low-water landscaping, and workforce development projects

RIVERSIDE, Calif. – The City of Riverside in partnership with seven non-profit and governmental partners have launched a $9.1 million initiative to complete smart growth projects in the Eastside neighborhood, including planting 2,000 trees, installing free solar in 100 homes, converting 100,000 square feet of turfgrass to low-water landscaping, and enhancing workforce training.

Dubbed the Eastside Climate Collaborative, the four-year effort is part of a State-funded $31.2 million initiative to make lasting community investments that reduce the effects of climate change in the Eastside neighborhood, which is roughly between downtown and UC Riverside.

“This is beyond exciting,” Riverside Mayor Patricia Lock Dawson said. “It’s community investment at a large scale, with wise projects that will produce environmental impacts.  This is a fantastic initiative for the residents of the Eastside neighborhood.”

The initiative is funded by two grants from the California Strategic Growth Council (SGC): a $9 million Transformative Climate Communities Grant (TCC) and a $22.1 million grant/loan funding package from the Affordable Housing and Sustainable Communities Program (AHSC).

Projects include the 65-unit Entrada housing development at 7th and Chicago Streets, as well as numerous transportation improvements that will improve bicycle and pedestrian safety.  These initiatives are expected to garner an additional $29.5 million in community investment match funds to increase even further the impact of community investment to improve the neighborhood.


The Eastside Climate Collaborative is supported by California Strategic Growth Council’s Transformative Climate Communities Program with funds from California Climate Investments, a statewide initiative that puts billions of Cap-and-Trade dollars to work reducing greenhouse gas emissions, strengthening the economy, and improving public health and the environment, particularly in disadvantaged communities. TCC prioritizes empowering members of historically disadvantaged communities to drive change, and will support the Eastside vision for community health, economic opportunity, and energy resilience.


“We can’t wait to start,” City Councilmember Andy Melendrez said. “These grants represent the outcome of a decade of discussion and planning by residents of the Eastside.  I could not be prouder of what the community has accomplished with the Transformative Climate Communities grants.”


Eastside Climate Collaborative funded projects and initiatives include:



Awarded TCC and AHSC Projects – Four Year Timeframe for Completion

Capital Project/Program:

Award Amount:

AHSC Grant Only: ($22,121,206) – To Begin in 2022


Entrada Housing Project – Wakeland Housing and Development Corporation - 65 units of affordable housing with Wakeland Housing and Development. Provide about 6,000 bus passes over three years to residents in the project and the Eastside Target Area.


Eastside Transportation Projects - New or expanded context sensitive bike paths or lanes (Class I, Class II, or Class IV) that are designed specifically for the Eastside neighborhood.  Build new walkways that improve mobility/access of pedestrians.  Expansion of the Vine Street Mobility Hub with the Riverside Transit Agency. 


TCC Grant Only: ($9,080,510 ) – To Begin in July of 2021


Solar Installations – GRID Alternatives – Free solar for 100 homes for low income, single family homeowners


WECAN Xeriscape – Santa Ana Watershed Project Authority (SAWPA) – 100,000 sq. ft., of xeriscape, turning turfgrass into low-water landscaping.


Tree Planting – Tree People – Planting of 1,000 street trees and distribution of 500 residential shade and 500 residential fruit trees


Grant Admin – City of Riverside


Data Collection - UCR CE-CERT and Partners – Measurement of climate investment impacts


Community Engagement – Riverside Community Health Foundation – engage, educate, and evaluate civic engagement


Displacement Avoidance - Community Settlement Association -- Collaborate with local residents and businesses to address displacement concerns in the project area.


Workforce Development – County of Riverside Workforce Development – Enhanced job training and placement activities in the Eastside neighborhood


TOTAL (All Sources)





“Congratulations to the City of Riverside and community partners on launching the Eastside Climate Collaborative,” said Jessica Buendia, Acting Executive Director of the California Strategic Growth Council. “We are inspired by the dedication of Eastside residents, and we cannot wait to witness the impact these investments will have in combatting climate change while increasing access to affordable transportation, housing, ​and energy options.”


Eastside residents can join the Eastside Climate Collaborative initiative and serve on resident advisory committees to provide input on Transformative Climate Communities Grant-related activities.  Advisory committees will begin meeting in late summer 2021.


More information: https://www.riversideca.gov/homelesssolutions/housing-authority/grants/eastside-climate-collaborative or email [email protected] or call Jeff McLaughlin at 951-826-5649.   Social Media:  @riversidecagov, @CalSGC, @CAClimateInvest, and @CalConservation