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California Counts, Report · November 2005

California’s Inland Empire: The Leading Edge of Southern California Growth

Anthony Downs

Presents a demographic portrait of one of the fastest-growing regions of California, the semi-desert region east of Los Angeles and Orange Counties known as the Inland Empire. By 2005, it contained 3.8 million Californians, 10 percent of the entire state population, and more than a half-million more than lived there in 2000. Describes the area’s distinct geographic and economic subregions. Affordable housing has been the main driving force for this phenomenal growth, but jobs, infrastructure and social services to support it have lagged behind, presenting a formidable challenge to leaders in the region and the state.