Just 35 miles east of downtown Los Angeles, the city of Ontario, California offers both residents and businesses the quintessential Southern California lifestyle.
Founded in 1882, Ontario thrived as an agricultural haven for citrus growers, but today the city is a hub of both commerce and community.
Ontario is a city where companies want to do business and a community where people want to live, work and play. Although our roots are firmly planted in agriculture and industry, the city of 167,000 is a growing community where residents enjoy world-class shopping, dining, lodging and entertainment, as well as award-winning wineries, all while basking in California’s signature sunshine.
Gateway to California & North America
Just 35 miles east of downtown Los Angeles, the city of Ontario is ideally situated as Southern California’s gateway to the West, to the entire United States and to the whole of North America. Ontario has all the infrastructure and amenities of Los Angeles – easy access to Los Angeles ports, interstates, railroads and the Ontario International Airport – without the expense and hassle of Los Angeles.
San Bernadino County has 2 million residents, and Ontario is the county’s fourth-largest city. With more than 163,000 residents today, Ontario’s population is set to double in the next 25 years. Many communities have lost residents during the Great Recession. Not Ontario. The city’s population has grown nearly 3 percent in the past three years, according to U.S. Census data.
Ontario’s Mayor and City Council, as well as city officials and employees, continually search for ways to improve the quality of life, invest in infrastructure and increase opportunities, both for individuals and for businesses. Ontario’s visionary leaders continue to provide companies and residents service and stability despite the recent economic conditions. For example, city leaders are working to gain local control of Ontario International Airport to make the best and fullest use of our invaluable asset. The city is also working on plans to develop mixed-use urban lifestyle districts that will include residential homes, retail and office space, industrial and business parks, and town centers.
Ontario’s unparalleled workforce provides companies with a pool of employees able to do anything, whether that’s operating a forklift or heading up an international corporation. With a population that is projected to double by 2035, Ontario’s labor pool of talented and trained workers – from warehouse personnel to middle management to corporate executives – is primed to grow. Ontario’s skilled workforce is constantly being replenished, and, unlike many cities, Ontario’s unemployment rate has steadily declined in recent years.
Within 15 miles of Ontario, residents – and employees – can further their education at any number of trade schools, colleges and universities. Ontario has nine trade schools that offer technical and vocational college courses, or residents can earn a college degree – from an associate degree up to a doctorate – at Chaffey College, the University of La Verne College of Law, National University, Argosy University, Brandman University and others. California State University’s San Bernadino campus is also about 25 miles east of Ontario.
Manufacturing & Distribution
With more than 100 million square feet of industrial manufacturing and distribution space, Ontario is the Inland Empire’s hub of industry – a hub that is fed by the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. Mag Instruments Inc. is headquartered in Ontario and is one of the city’s major manufacturers. At Mag Instruments’ massive Ontario factory, several hundred employees make the renowned Maglite flashlights and even build machinery that fabricates components for the flashlights. The ICEE Company is also headquartered in Ontario, and a local Toyota factory manufactures both Toyota components and Hino trucks.
Cost of doing business
Dollar for dollar, the city of Ontario offers companies a lower cost of doing business – and their employees a lower cost of living. The cost per square foot of Ontario’s commercial, retail, office and industrial space is much lower in comparison to our coastal neighbors. The median sale price of industrial space in Los Angeles is $115 per square foot compared with $71 in Ontario. The median sales price of commercial office space in Los Angeles is $182 per square foot compared with $99 per square foot in Ontario.
As of August 2013, the median sales price of homes in Ontario was $262,000 – vastly more affordable than $396,000 in Long Beach, $494,000 in Los Angeles and $994,000 in Santa Monica.
With four major interstates, two railroads and the Ontario International Airport, the city of Ontario offers direct access from Los Angeles to California, to the United States and to North America. The Ontario International Airport is the 15th busiest airport in the nation by the amount of air cargo that travels through it. Major airlines, including American, Delta, United and Southwest, fly into the Ontario airport, which handles more than110 daily flights. Ontario International Airport is just minutes from downtown Ontario, and the Los Angeles International Airport – LAX – is 55 miles west of the city. The Ontario airport is set to grow, and plans are in place to add a third terminal as traffic continues to increase.
As busy as Ontario’s skies may be, the city also has a burgeoning freight system on the ground. The city handles the mass of freight traffic – via both rail and road – from the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach to the rest of America. Ontario sits at the crossroads of two major interstates that serve Southern California and feed into the nation: I-15, which runs from San Diego to Las Vegas and beyond, as well as I-10 from Los Angeles to Phoenix. Both I-215 and I-210 are just minutes from the city. Amtrak offers passenger rail service through Ontario, and BNSF and Union Pacific both provide freight rail through the city.
Investment in Goods and Services
The city continually invests in capital improvement projects to encourage the flow of goods and services and preserve the community’s visual and structural integrity. Ontario maintains more than 1,200 miles of paved roads in the city and constantly repairs and rehabilitates sidewalks, streetlights, storm drains, utilities, curbs, gutters, ramps and other public infrastructure.
Ontario Mills and Convention Center
The Ontario Convention Center has 225,000 square feet of flexible meeting and exhibit space, including a 70,000-square-foot Exhibit Hall and a 20,000-square-foot Ballroom. The state-of-the-art center also offers the latest in audiovisual technology as well as Wi-Fi, Internet, DS3, VOIP and video conferencing. Several hotels surround the convention center, which is only a 10-minute drive to the Ontario International Airport or a 10-minute drive to Ontario Mills, California’s largest indoor outlet mall.
Ontario Mills is home to more than 200 stores, including factory outlet stores by Disney, Nike, Coach, J. Crew, Calvin Klein, Tommy Hilfiger, Nordstrom, Saks Fifth Avenue, Neiman Marcus and many more. Enjoy a meal at restaurants such as Rainforest Café and Dave & Busters, catch a movie at Ontario Mill’s 30-screen AMC Theater or revel in a show at the Improv Comedy Club & Dinner Theatre.
Ontario is looking to the future, and our leaders and our residents know that the future of any city lies in its healthy economy and healthy sense of community. As Southern California’s gateway, Ontario is the ideal place for companies to do business and the ideal place for residents to live, work, play.