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Savannah Lakes Village

Savannah Lakes VillageSavannah Lakes Village (SLV) is carved into the pristine natural beauty of the Sumter National Forest, just below the foothills along the South Carolina and Georgia border in historic McCormick, South Carolina. “The Village” is encompassed by three state parks, the Sumter National Forest, and features over 25 miles of shoreline on beautiful Lake Thurmond. Indoor and outdoor recreational activities abound in this area of South Carolina’s “Freshwater Coast.” Members and guest have access to their own 23,000 sq. ft. activity center, two clubhouses with dining facilities, and 36 holes of award winning championship golf. SLV is distinguished as one of the premiere large-scale planned communities in the southeast and offers a huge variety of amenities. Residents can take a few laps in the indoor 25-meter pool, challenge their friends to a game of tennis or bowling, or enjoy a great workout in the fitness center with the assistance of a personal trainer. The spectacular South Carolina climate provides for unlimited outdoor recreational activity plus the opportunity to get involved in a wide array of clubs and activities. The residents of Savannah Lakes Village enjoy a resort community lifestyle, but also contribute their talents and time supporting the local area through numerous charitable organizations, civic clubs, and volunteer groups.

Savannah Lakes VillageIn 2002, the SLV Property Owners Association approached several state agencies concerning the risk of wildland fire. Savannah Lakes was classified a community at risk by the South Carolina Forestry Commission due to the close proximity of homes, undeveloped lots and forestlands. The Savannah Lakes Commission explored the possibility of conducting controlled burns to reduce the risk of fire but the concept was rejected because of the large number of individual property owners involved, the potential liability of controlled burning operations, and existing Architectural Control Committee rules and regulations that prohibit open burning in Savannah Lakes Village.

In February 2004, the SLV Board of Directors created a Control Burn Task Force to reassess the threat and any potential corrective actions. In March 2004, the Task Force met with representatives from the South Carolina (SC) Forestry Commission, U. S. Forest Service and the Corps of Engineers to discuss fire risk and controlled burning issues in Savannah Lakes and the surrounding areas. In June 2004, SLV contacted Firewise for educational assistance and requested information on how it could become involved in the Firewise Communities/USA program. SLV staff members and volunteers met with the South Carolina Firewise Coordinator and planned a “HOW TO HAVE A FIREWISE HOME” workshop. Interactive Training Media, Inc., of Tallahassee Florida, www.itm-info.com, facilitated the workshop and over 200 residents from the six neighborhood communities attended. Next, Savannah Lakes invited local leaders from the surrounding area to attend a “LIVING ON THE EDGE” community leader workshop. In October 2004 the SLV Board of Directors officially designated the SLV Firewise Council from the membership of the Control Burn Task Force with representatives from the SC Forestry Commission and the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers.

Savannah Lakes Village

SLV conducted its first community wide workday on November 6, 2004. Local foresters conducted individual home risk assessments and a chipper was used to reduce over twenty loads of brush to useable mulch.

Savannah Lakes VillageOn November 18, 2004, SLV received national recognition as South Carolina’s first Firewise Community/USA. The recognition puts SLV in elite company. Nationwide, only 100 communities have been awarded Firewise status.

In January 2005, Savannah Lakes Village revised its Architectural Control Guidelines to require the consideration of suggested Firewise construction and landscaping modifications on all new home construction. Additionally new residents are provided an information package on the Firewise program that includes an interactive CD titled “Living On The Edge in South Carolina, How to Have a Firewise Home.”

Savannah Lakes VillageIt is the goal of the SLV Firewise Council to keep Firewise principles in the forefront by continuing to raise the awareness of the risk of fire in the wildland/urban interface and educating the residents of SLV on reducing the wildfire hazard that exists around them.

See more information on Savannah Lakes Village.