City Grill

Natalie Lomedico

Natalie Lomedico 
Giroux Glass Inc.

Riverside’s labor force has been hard hit by COVID-19, with unemployment now at 7.9%, a major increase from 2019’s rate of 3.9%. “One ray of positivity has been that warehouse and transportation work have been resilient throughout the pandemic as this sector has expanded throughout the region,” says Lomedico.
Riverside is home to research school University of California, Riverside, one of 10 UC campuses in the state. “The area has always had a generous number of health care providers and has become increasingly popular as the site for warehouse and distribution facilities, which has kept construction at an increased rate,” says Lomedico.

Containing COVID-19 is essential to the area’s recovery, she says, with fewer of Riverside County’s 2.5 million residents fully vaccinated compared with the state average and with more residents testing positive compared with the rest of California. Meanwhile, home prices continue to rise, up 22.5% year over year. “It remains one of the last bastions for more affordable housing in Southern California, with the median home price at $502,000, compared to $899,000 in Los Angeles,” she says.