is a city located in Riverside County, California. As of January 1, 2008, the population of Moreno Valley was 180,466. A relatively young city, its rapid growth in the 1980s and the 2000s propelled it to its status as second-largest city in Riverside County by population, and one of the Inland Empire's population centers. Neighboring Riverside, California is the county seat and largest city in the county; the two cities are closely tied, sharing March Air Reserve Base with the city of Perris and is north of Lake Perris.
Moreno Valley is located at 33°55'35" North, 117°13'42" West (33.926267, -117.228345).
According to the United States Census Bureau, the city has a total area of 51.6 square miles (133.6 km²), of which, 51.2 square miles (132.7 km²) of it is land and 0.4 square miles (0.9 km²) of it is water.
Moreno Valley is located at a geographic crossroad. To the east lie the San Gorgonio Pass and Coachella Valley; to the south are Lake Perris, Perris, the San Jacinto Mountains, and the route to San Diego; to the north are the San Bernardino Valley and San Bernardino Mountains. To the west lies neighboring Riverside, as well as Los Angeles and Orange Counties. The heavily-traveled routes of State Route 60 (locally called the Moreno Valley Freeway) and Interstate 215 both pass through the city. It lies under approach paths for Los Angeles International Airport, John Wayne Airport in Orange County, Ontario International Airport and San Bernardino International Airport.
One of the most visible geographical features in Moreno Valley, visible from almost anywhere in the city, is Box Springs Mountain. This mountain at the northwest end of the city towers over the city, providing a concrete landmark. The face of the mountain that faces the city has a large "M" constructed upon it. This was built privately at the encouragement of the City Council, which argued it would foster unity. The letter is located on public land and is maintained entirely by charity. The letter had lights installed on December 3, 2005 to celebrate Moreno Valley's 21st anniversary of its incorporation and the completion of the repairs of heavy damage to the M, due to excessive rain the year before. The mayor at that time, Bonnie Flickinger, has said that the citizens liked it that way and that the council would try to get it to light up regularly. No lights have been installed as of 19 August 2007. Several Eagle Scout projects have been dedicated to maintaining the letter.