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Riverbluff-A Conservation Community-Part 1


Click on the file below to view the Part 1 video with Laura Winn Smith.

Riverbluff Part 1

Conserv has selected Riverbluff, in Charlottesville Virginia, as the June, 2008 Success Story.

The developers of RiverBluff, PS2 Properties LLC, began with the goal to design a community that embraced environmental conservation and healthy living.  Being so close to the commerce center of Charlottesville minimizes traffic; being right on the Rivanna Trail enhances and facilitates fresh air and exercise; homes close to the tree-lined sidewalk encourage a sense of “place” and belonging.  The developers further expanded the ecological philosophy of the community in their design of a roadway/site system that directs the natural flow of water into gardens to give nutrients to plants which in turn offer beauty and enhanced health to the area.  All the plants are “native” to the area, meaning their growth patterns are in the natural cycle of our climate, sun and rain.

In fact, RiverBluff has become a role model for new development, and recognized with two awards.  The Charlottesville Waldorf Foundation presented RiverBluff with the “Land Use and Development” Award in the 2007 Commonwealth Environmental Leadership Awards (CELA) “…joining an extraordinary collection of fellow environmental visionaries who have displayed an unwavering commitment to a variety of today’s most crucial issues, including sustainability, conservation and preservation.” 

In February 2008, the City of Charlottesville awarded RiverBluff the “Sustainable Development of the Year”.  Charlottesville’s Green City Initiative is enhanced with communities such as RiverBluff who set the benchmark for new development with their innovative community design strategies.

RiverBluff is more than a vision today.  It is a viable community where real families live and thrive.  It’s the neighbors themselves who participate in the restoration of the distinct eco-systems on the over 18 acres of property:  woodlands, wetlands and meadows.  Three years ago, folks from the local chapter of the Native Plant Society came and gave landscape guidance to the developers.  Last fall, Phil Stokes, President of that chapter wrote in their newsletter of his follow-up visit…  “What a treat it was to drive into Charlottesville’s newly developed RiverBluff subdivision at the end of Riverside Avenue ….. A refreshing oasis of smartly designed homes of efficient size attractively arranged on sensibly sized lots.  What was truly remarkable was that nearly all the plantings appeared to be native species, masses of them, and no fescue planted in common areas.”  He was clearly pleased that good environmental initiatives can be and are accomplished in our fair city.

You can find information about this award-winning community at

Next: Riverbluff Part 2.   


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