Costa Mesa is a city in Orange County, California. Take a look below for 20 fascinating and fun facts about Costa Mesa, California, United States.
1. Since its incorporation in 1953, the city has grown from a semi-rural farming community of 16,840 to a suburban area including part of the South Coast Plaza–John Wayne Airport edge city, one of the region’s largest commercial clusters, with an economy based on retail, commerce, and light manufacturing.
2. The population was 111,918 at the 2020 United States Census.
3. Members of the Gabrieleño/Tongva and Juaneño/Luiseño nations long inhabited the area.
4. After the 1769 expedition of Gaspar de Portolà, a Spanish expedition led by Junípero Serra named the area Vallejo de Santa Ana (Valley of Saint Anne).
5. On November 1, 1776, Mission San Juan Capistrano became the area’s first permanent European settlement in Alta California, New Spain.
6. In 1801, the Spanish Empire granted 62,500 acres (253 km2) to Jose Antonio Yorba, which he named Rancho San Antonio. Yorba’s great rancho included the lands where the communities of Olive, Orange, Villa Park, Santa Ana, Tustin, Costa Mesa and Newport Beach stand today.
7. After the Mexican-American war, California became part of the United States, and American settlers arrived in this area and formed the town of Fairview in the 1880s near the modern intersection of Harbor Boulevard and Adams Avenue.
8. However, a flood in 1889 wiped out the railroad serving the community, and it shriveled.
9. To the south, meanwhile, the community of Harper had arisen on a siding of the Santa Ana and Newport Railway, named after a local rancher.
10. This town prospered on its agricultural goods.
11. On May 11, 1920, Harper changed its name to Costa Mesa, which means “table coast” or “coast mesa” in Spanish.
12. This is a reference to the city’s geography as being a plateau by the coast.
13. Fanny Bixby Spencer and her husband sponsored the contest which selected the city’s new name.
14. Costa Mesa surged in population during and after World War II, as many thousands trained at Santa Ana Army Air Base and returned after the war with their families. Within three decades of incorporation, the city’s population had nearly quintupled.
15. Measure Y is a ballot initiative approved by voters in 2016. It requires public approval of projects that have a general plan amendment or zoning change and would add 40 or more dwelling units or 10,000 or more square feet of commercial space.
16. The median housing price is $807,000 ($505 per sq ft) and $3,500 for the median rent per month.
17. The Orange County Fair takes place at the fairgrounds in Costa Mesa each July. The Fair receives more than one million visitors each year.
18. The Annual Scarecrow & Pumpkin Festival was first held in 1938, went on hiatus for seven decades, and then was restarted in 2013.
19. Adjacent to the Fairgrounds is the Pacific Amphitheatre, which has hosted acts such as Madonna, Jessica Simpson, Steppenwolf, and Kelly Clarkson.
20. Costa Mesa has been home to the NFL’s Los Angeles Chargers training center, training camp and cooperate headquarters since 2017. The team agreed to a lease with the facility they moved into prior to their relocation from San Diego.