Conservation Spotlight: River Island

In 2004, local developer, Vic Mills had a vision to create an environmentally-conscious neighborhood on the banks of the Savannah River and Jones Creek in Evans, GA where nature would shape the lifestyle of man. He called this special place: River Island.

In the early stages of the development, Mr. Mills partnered with the Land Trust, planning how to save the most critical spaces in this beautiful riverfront landscape. With the donation of a conservation easement to the Land Trust in 2009, River Island’s three miles of untouched shoreline are now permanently protected, offering a rustic, yet elegant waterfront setting with miles of meandering boardwalk pathways and walking trails. Situated among gracefully rolling bluffs where the waters of the Savannah run wildest, River Island’s “Conservation Community” offers residents 129 acres of beckoning waterfront, a cross-water view of Sumter National Forest, lush green spaces and gathering spots, with private and communal residential water access. Moreover, home designs purposely feature natural materials such as wood, slate and stone with limited use of unnatural barriers.

Over the years, the Land Trust has stewarded River Island’s most precious natural areas, ensuring the preservation of significant tree cover and the environmental integrity of open space and natural habitats. The project is also a great example of how development and preservation can work together to greatly enhance the quality of life for residents in terms of personal enjoyment, recreation.

The view from the Grand Park is spectacular. Through mature hardwoods draped with Spanish moss, you might catch a glimpse of a Great Egret tiptoeing its way through the preserved wetlands or Canada geese gliding in to settle on the Savannah. A network of boardwalks and walking trails wind along the shoreline so that the beauty of this exquisite area where Jones Creek meets the Savannah River may be viewed from all angles.

We love this part of the Savannah and want to share its beauty with you! On October 12th, we will be hosting our 14th annual fundraiser, the Bash, at the River Island Clubhouse overlooking the Savannah. Join us for a night of celebration complete with live music and a classic oyster roast, and help us raise awareness and funds so that we may continue our mission of preserving many more spectacular areas throughout the CSRA!