[email protected]

Contact Information
San Bernardino Office
550 E. Hospitality Lane, Suite 300
San Bernardino, CA 92408
Tel: (909) 890-4499
Fax: (909) 890-9877

Practice Areas

  • Land Use
  • Logistics


  • J.D., University of California Davis School of Law, 1998
  • B.S., Environmental Science, University of California, Riverside, 1995, cum laude


  • California, 1998
  • Nevada, 2002
  • U.S. District Court, Central District of California, 2001
  • U.S. District Court, District of Nevada, 2010




Matthew Nelson serves as a team leader in the land use department and has successfully guided major commercial, industrial, health care, and retail developers, as well as mining and transportation interests, through the challenges of obtaining approvals and permits from a wide range of federal, state, and local jurisdictions. He skillfully assists clients in the development and implementation of strategies, which includes providing pragmatic counsel on legislative and administrative land use approvals such as the development of impacted properties, redevelopment projects, public financing, development agreements, tentative maps and subdivision map issues, zoning, general plan amendments, specific plans, traffic and transportation issues, conditional use permits, and variances. 

Mr. Nelson’s primary focus is land use and environmental CEQA/NEPA document review and project entitlement for retail shopping centers; commercial, industrial, and residential developments; and mining and transportation clients. He provides oversight to ensure that environmental review and development approvals are sufficient and legally defensible.  Mr. Nelson is also involved in many high-profile projects under construction, approved, or in development along the rapidly growing I-215 corridor in Riverside County, as well as the high desert area of San Bernardino County where he has earned a reputation for moving projects through challenges and obstacles with pragmatism.


  • Comment, “NEPA and Standing: Halting the Spread of ‘Slash-and-Burn Jurisprudence’,” 31 U.C. Davis Law Review 253 (1997)


  • Riverside County Bar Association
  • San Bernardino County Bar Association
  • Clark County Bar Association
  • Leadership Riverside, Class of 2010
  • C. Riverside Athletics Association, Chair
  • Cub Scouts Pack 97, Den Leader, Past Committee Chair
  • Member, Advisory Board for Land Use and Environmental Planning Certificate, UC Riverside Extension


Speaking Engagements:

  • Panelist/Speaker, Advanced CEQA Seminar, Association of Environmental Professionals – Inland Empire Chapter, March 2012, March 2013
  • Panelist/Speaker, “Traversing the Entitlement Process for High Profile or Controversial Projects,” Lorman Seminars, October 2012
  • Panelist/Speaker, “Transportation:  The Movement of Goods from Port to the End User,” Association of Environmental Professionals State Conference, March 2010
  • Panelist/Speaker, “Transportation Studies, CEQA and the Public Realm – Let’s Talk About It,” Association of Environmental Professionals State Conference, March 2010
  • Panelist/Speaker, “Subdivision Map Act,” Lorman Seminars, December 2008


  • Senior Research Editor, U.C. Davis Law Review, 1997-1998

Representative Matters

  • Entitled two different 1,000,000 square foot warehouse/distribution center projects in the High Desert.
  • Entitled a 100+ bed hospital and medical office building in Southwest Riverside County
  • Entitled over ten commercial shopping center projects ranging from 200,000 to 400,000 square feet throughout Southern California.


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San Bernardino, CA
550 E. Hospitality Lane
Suite 300
San Bernardino, CA 92408

T 909-890-4499
F 909-890-9877

San Diego, CA
401 West A Street
Suite 925
San Diego, CA 92101

T 619-794-0050
F 619-615-2180