University of California, Riverside - Long-Range Development Plan

UC Riverside Strategic Plan Campus Strategy Analytics Higher Education

As UC Riverside experiences a steep trajectory of growth in enrollment and on-campus living, its 20-year development plan illustrates how the University can increase density while retaining the quality education, character, and legacy of this land-grant institution.


University of California, Riverside


Riverside, California


Campus Master Plans, Campus Strategy & Analytics, Higher Education

Part of the prestigious University of California system, the University of California Riverside (UC Riverside) is one of America’s fastest-rising universities in terms of reputation, research, and student success. US News & World Report consistently ranks the university highly for social mobility. More than three-quarters of its students identify as non-white and half are first-generation. UC Riverside is also rapidly growing. Its fall 2022 freshman class enrollment topped 37,000 students and the school anticipates enrollment will continue to increase through 2035.

UC Riverside Strategic Plan and Land Use

The University’s 20-year development plan provides a blueprint for how it can successfully manage this exponential increase in enrollment.


It focuses new growth on the east end of campus, preserving the University’s mid-century modern architectural core and the indispensable agricultural research fields that occupy the west half of campus. A new mixed-use zone adds much needed student housing, additional student services and welcome commercial amenities such as drug stores and coffee shops.


UC Riverside Strategic Plan and Land Use

It also creates a vibrant gateway and multi-modal transportation routes into campus where none existed before.


SmithGroup developed the plan in collaboration with UC Riverside’s planning team. They engaged with several topical working groups that comprised faculty, staff, students and Riverside community members.


UC Riverside Strategic Land Use Plan

The phased development will eventually add 14,000 new student beds, dining halls and recreation facilities, while maintaining the character of the campus and meeting both the school’s and the state’s ambitious sustainability goals.