The Grand neighborhood has a wide variety of terrain, with hills in the east, Tequesquite Arroyo and flat lands in the center, and a steep slope down to the Santa Ana River basin in the north. Tequesquite Arroyo is a major feature of the neighborhood, being Riverside’s largest arroyo. Spanish explorer Juan Bautista de Anza led his expeditions through the arroyo to the Santa Ana River in 1774 and 1775- 1776. The name Tequesquite is derived from the Aztec words “tetl” meaning rock, and “quixquitl” meaning efflorescent.
Initially part of the City of Riverside’s original 39.4 square miles, the Grand neighborhood has grown twice in the past century. Two annexations, one in 1955 and the other in 1969, established the northwest boundary of the neighborhood, taking the City limits to the edge of the Santa Ana River. The natural physical environment of the area has shaped the street design, giving the blocks irregular shapes, and it has created ideal land for recreation. Approximately half of the neighborhood is developed, and the other half is devoted to open space. The residential blocks that comprise the southern half of the Grand neighborhood consist of generally medium density residential lots, with some pockets of lower density residential areas. Grand neighborhood offers both hillside homes with beautiful views of the Santa Ana River and heavily landscaped neighborhoods with a very cozy character. Many homes in this neighborhood were built prior to 1950, with development peaking in the decade following World War II. Conveniently located within the neighborhood is a small commercial center at Grand and Jurupa Avenues.
The Grand neighborhood offers great opportunities for recreation and is rich in public facilities. Recently, the Santa Ana River Trail was constructed along the northern edge of the neighborhood. This parkway will eventually span 100 miles, from the crest of the San Bernardino Mountains to the coast, linked with a series of parks along the way. One of the trail access points is planned at the future Tequesquite Park site. The County Martha McLean Anza Narrows Park marks the northwestern edge of the Grand neighborhood, and the Santa Ana River Wildlife Area lies beyond the City limits along the Santa Ana River, to the north. Other important neighborhood facilities include Mountain View Elementary School and Mountain View Park.