The Inland Empire
) is a metropolitan area and region in Southern California
. The term may be used to refer to the cities of western Riverside County
and southwestern San Bernardino County
, sometimes including the desert communities of Palm Springs
and the rest of the Coachella Valley
; a much larger definition includes all of San Bernardino and Riverside counties.
The U.S. Census Bureau
-defined Riverside–San Bernardino–Ontario metropolitan area
, which comprises Riverside County and San Bernardino County, California, covers more than 27,000 sq mi (70,000 km2
) and has a population of approximately 4 million. Most of the area's population is located in southwestern San Bernardino County and northwestern Riverside County. At the end of the nineteenth century, the Inland Empire was a major center of agriculture, including citrus, dairy, and winemaking. However, agriculture declined through the twentieth century, and since the 1970s a rapidly growing population, fed by families migrating in search of affordable housing, has led to more residential, industrial, and commercial development. Read more...