Contact: Joe Vargo, Perris Public Information Officer
Phone: 951-956-2120
jvargo@cityofperris.org

Ribbon Cutting on State-of-the-Art Warehouse

Perris Mayor Daryl Busch and Riverside County Supervisor Marion Ashley stand in front of a sign announcing the opening of the Sysco warehouse on property that once served as residences for March Air Force Base personnel.
Perris Mayor Daryl Busch and Riverside County Supervisor Marion Ashley stand in front of a sign announcing the opening of the Sysco warehouse on property that once served as residences for March Air Force Base personnel.

Perris officials joined regional representatives Wednesday to cut the ribbon on a state-of-the-art restaurant supply warehouse on ground formerly occupied by dilapidated military housing used as a training site for Marines heading to Iraq.

The $110-million, 500,000-square-foot Sysco Riverside warehouse will employ 400 people immediately and that number is expected to grow as business takes off, said Sysco Riverside President Saul Adelsberg.

Initial sales are projected at $400-million, he said. The warehouse can hold up to 750,000-cases of food products for distributions to restaurants, hospitals, schools and other commercial customers along with two test kitchens on site.

The site near Interstate 215 and Van Buren Boulevard also includes 61 loading docks for trucks to receive products, hydrogen-powered forklifts and pallet jacks, drought-tolerant landscaping and a soon-to-be completed one-megawatt solar-system that will generate half of the site’s electrical needs.

Adelsberg said the warehouse is expected to pump at least a million dollars in taxes and permit fees into the local economy annually. “This is an exciting day,” he said.

Perris Mayor Daryl Busch and Saul Adelsberg, president of Sysco Riverside, hold the scissors right before the official ribbon-cutting at the 500,000-square-foot warehouse.
Perris Mayor Daryl Busch and Saul Adelsberg, president of Sysco Riverside, hold the scissors right before the official ribbon-cutting at the 500,000-square-foot warehouse.

The project was developed with the assistance of the March Joint Powers Authority, a government agency created when March Air Force Base was downsized from an active-duty to reserve base in 1996. The result was a smaller military footprint and thousands of acres of land available for re-use.

The land that Sysco Riverside sits on once served as the Arnold Heights residential housing tract for Air Force personnel. Later, the site was converted to an urban-warfare training center for Camp Pendleton Marines prior to their deployment to Iraq.

The March JPA is governed by the March Joint Powers Commission, made up of representatives from Perris, Moreno Valley, Riverside and Riverside County. The commission worked with a private developer to create the Meridian Business Park, where Sysco Riverside and several other businesses have occupied in the recent years.

Perris mayor Daryl Busch serves as chairman of the Joint Powers Commission and was one of the dignitaries who cut the ribbon that signaled the official dedication of Sysco. Busch praised the JPA for converting what had become dilapidated housing—houses were contaminated with lead and asbestos—into a world-class business center.

“The projects the JPA strives to bring to this area are ones that create jobs, services and add revenue to the Perris Valley and beyond,” he said. “We’ve been doing this a long time and it’s a pleasure to see this facility completed.”

Perris Mayor Daryl Busch and City Councilman Mark Yarbrough at the Sysco Riverside warehouse. Both serve as members of the March Joint Powers Commission, which is charged with converting former military property to civilian uses after the downsizing of March Air Force Base.
Perris Mayor Daryl Busch and City Councilman Mark Yarbrough at the Sysco Riverside warehouse. Both serve as members of the March Joint Powers Commission, which is charged with converting former military property to civilian uses after the downsizing of March Air Force Base.

Busch said that with the addition of Sysco, the JPA has added about 3,100 jobs at the former Air Force Base. The goal, still years away, is to create 32,000 jobs.

Riverside County Supervisor Marion Ashley, a Perris resident, hailed the Sysco center as a “great opportunity for Perris residents to find good jobs close to home.” “This is the March JPA at its best,” Ashley said.

Perris City Councilman Mark Yarbrough, who also sits on the Joint Powers Commission, called Sysco an “anchor project” that demonstrates the agency’s ability to partner with the business community. The Joint Powers Commission, he said, “cares about what it does, cares about the people of this region and gets results.” “It’s a pleasure to be part of,” Yarbrough said.

Riverside County Supervisor Kevin Jeffries, whose district includes Sysco Riverside, noted in his remarks that many of the construction materials and labor for the building came from the Inland Empire. Those include masonry, concrete, wall covering, insulation, air-control system, fencing and steel contractors.

“We owe a great deal of appreciation to those employers and employees,” he said. Jeffries said those temporary jobs have been replaced with permanent employees whose number hopefully will increase in the coming months and years.