VOF acquired the easement using a $100,000 grant from its Preservation Trust Fund. The easement requires permanent public access to the site, and designates most of the property as riparian protection zones. “With more than a mile of frontage along Turkey Island Creek and four acres of tidal wetlands, the partners wanted to ensure strong protections for water quality,” said Kristin Jones, Virginia Outdoor Foundation’s assistant director of easements.
Capital Region Land Conservancy, the organization that acquired the acreage as part of the acquisition of historic Malvern Hill Farm earlier this year, transferred 11.9 acres to Henrico County and 12.2 acres to the James River Association. The JRA acquired its acreage using grants awarded by the National Park Service Chesapeake Bay Gateways Network and Peter Jay Sharp Foundation and plans to improve it for public access using grants from The Beirne Carter Foundation and the DuPont Clear into the Future program. The project will feature a canoe launch and provide access to the James River, Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trail, Virginia Capital Trail
, and James River Ecology School at Presquile National Wildlife Refuge. The public access site is supported by plans including the Chesapeake Bay Watershed Access Plan and James River Segment Plan and is anticipated to be complete in 2019.
“Connecting people to the James River and its tributaries is a goal of the James River Association,” said Justin Doyle, Community Conservation Manager for the James River Association. “When complete, this project will give residents of the Richmond region a new park in which to enjoy Turkey Island Creek.”
Turkey Island Creek enters the James on the right side of this screen shot near the “G” in “Granville.”
I was the Outdoors Columnist at the Times-Dispatch from 2007 to 2013, writing twice a week about mountain biking, fishing, hunting, paddling and much more. I live a 1/4 mile from the James River, close enough to see bald eagles soaring over my house on their way to find a meal. Pretty cool, eh?