The City of Rolling Hills Estates officially became Los Angeles County’s 60th municipality on September 18, 1957. In that first year, the City’s population totaled only 3,500, but its new citizens were united in their concern over maintaining the community’s rural atmosphere and equestrian lifestyle, characterized by rolling hills, white fences, bridle trails, and vast open spaces.
The City was also concerned in its early years with annexation of new areas. In 1959, the City added the Montecillo, Chandler Quarry, Country Club Estates and northern Masongate areas to its eastern and western portions. Between 1960 and 1966, the City annexed the research and development land behind the Northrop Corporation; the Peninsula Center, Harbor Sight, the Ranch, Rolling Hills Park Estates, Highridge, Hillcrest Manor, Hillcrest Meadows, Terraces, and Cresta Verdes areas. Finally, in 1982, the City added the site of the former Palos Verdes Landfill to assure that concerns regarding this closed facility would be recognized.
Today there are 30 neighborhood areas within the community, each with its own special character, architectural style, and Homeowners’ Association. These Associations often represent citizens directly before the City Council and serve as neighborhood social organizations as well.
While the community has undergone changes over the years, the City continues to represent the basic ideals held by the original “incorporating pioneers” while remaining responsive to the changing needs and interests of its residents. The City takes an active role in maintaining the high quality of life that makes this community such an attractive place to live. As in the past, today’s emphasis in managing the City is placed upon preserving its rural residential character and, at the same time, providing the best possible services to its citizens.