St. George Island Geography
St. George Island is a place of rare & unusual natural beauty. Beaches stretch out in a broad white expanse for miles along the Gulf of Mexico. The bay side has beautiful small thickets of Palm trees, Live Oaks & Pines & some areas on the bay have white sand border beaches.
We will be glad to provide you with a map of the Island, along with the currently listed properties. One of the best ways of learning the Island is to take a flat list of the lots and houses for sale and plot them on the map. You can really understand the property values when you look at the properties for sale, plotted on the plat map. Ultimately, you have to walk on the property, understand the terrain, listen to how much or little traffic noise you hear, see the view from the ground and a ladder, see if there is swamp land on the property, etc, etc.
St. George Island has been subdivided into four major areas. Three of those areas are platted subdivisions, and the other area is Dr. Julian G. Bruce St. George Island State Park. The Three Subdivisions are: St. George Island Gulf Beaches, The East End, and St. George Plantation
Each Subdivision is divided up into different areas, in different ways that are important to understand, especially for those considering the purchase of a home, building site, or investment property. St. George Island is located approximately 4 miles south of Apalachicola in the Gulf of Mexico, in the eastern portion of the Florida Panhandle in Franklin County, Florida.
St. George Island Gulf Beaches
The St. George Island Gulf Beaches consists of five "Units", each of which is further subdivided into Blocks and Lots.
Unit 1 (East and West) was originally platted and recorded on September 9, 1952. You drive right into the middle of Unit 1 as you come off the bridge and find yourself on Franklin Boulevard. To your left is Unit 1 East, and to your right is Unit 1 West. The first three blocks both east and west are zoned commercial, despite the fact that the Franklin County has allowed some residential uses in the commercial area. The commercial lots are typically 25 feet wide by 135 feet deep, with variations such as 25' x 275' Beach Front commercial lots and 25'x100'' lots located across the street from the Beach. West of West 3rd Street to West 7th Street, and East of East 3rd Street to East 6th Street, is zoned residential, as is almost all of the rest of the island. Lot sizes are typically 100 feet on the road frontage and run 175 feet deep with only minor deviations from this size on a few lots. The lots across the street from the beach in this area are referred to as "Street to Street" lots as they run from Gorrie Drive (The Beach Road) and Gulf Beach Drive, the main Island road. You will see many older ground level homes in this area, which are "grand fathered" in. New building codes require houses to be built on pilings. The combination of lower density created by the Street-to-Street lots and better views afforded by ground level houses make the few remaining empty lots in this area highly prized.
Unit 2 (East) and Unit 3 (West) were both platted and recorded on February 15, 1956. These two areas are almost mirror images of each other. By driving your car east between 6th Street East to 11th then turning right on 11th and heading back west on Gorrie to East 6th street again, you will have cruised the entirety of Unit 2. Similarly, starting at 7th Street West, and heading west to 12th Street, turning right and heading back east on Gorrie Dr., you will have traversed all of Unit 3 when you get back to 7th St. West. Almost all of the lots in Unit 2 and Unit 3 are 100 feet by 150 feet deep, which works out to be very close to 1/3rd acre, which is generally the size of most lots throughout the "Gulf Beaches". Some of my friends prefer Unit 2, while other friends prefer Unit 3. As for me, I'm for my friends.
Units 1, 2, and 3 have the bike path running along the south side of Gulf Beach Dr. There is not much traffic on Gorrie Dr., so runners, walkers and bikers have over 8 miles of safe paths to traverse. Of course the main attraction of Units 1, 2, and 3 is the easy access to the Beach afforded by 80-100 foot wide Beach access points at the ends of all the numbered Streets, and the 6' to 8' foot access paths between every Beachfront lot/house. Because all of the lots are so close to the Gulf, there are great Gulf Views from almost every house in Units 1, 2,& 3.
Unit 4 (East) was platted and recorded on April 15, 1960. The original platted area was much larger than what you see today. The State of Florida bought most of the bay front area of Unit 4, making the lots that back up to the "State Land" more valuable than other lots on Pine Ave. and Bay Shore Dr. The State owned land behind Unit 4 has a good deal of pristine wetland areas, but the intrepid hiker can traverse some of the most beautiful bay front areas found anywhere in Florida, right out the back door of many lots in Unit 4. Unit 4 runs between 6th Street East and 11th Street East with the majority of the lots being on either side of East Pine Ave.
Unit 5 (West) was also platted and recorded on April 15, 1960. This sprawling area on the Bayside of the West side of the Gulf Beaches is typified by miles of lime rock roads that meander around to such an extent that many people get lost as they are exploring, or trying to find a friends house. This area of the Island claims some of the best deep-water (a relative term) channels found on St. George Island. There are seven Canals, most of which were man made, that increase the number of lots that can sport a boat dock. The prices of the waterfront lots are, as expected, more expensive, but this area also has the least expensive Interior, Bay view, and Gulf view lots on the Island. The peaceful nature of some of the interior areas of Unit 5 attract hermits, artists, Pet owners, and folks looking for a second home where they can truly get away from it all. The close proximity to the Beach and Bay provide Unit 5 homeowners an outstanding value at relatively low prices.
The East End
The East End, located between 11th St East and the State Park developed very differently from the St. George Island Gulf Beaches. In the mid 70's the owner's/developers (Leisure Properties) began selling off 5 acre Tracts on the Beach Side of Gulf Beach Drive and approximately 7-10 acre Tracts on the Bay Side. These Tracts were typically bought, and further subdivided into one-acre lots. On the Beach side of Gulf Beach Dr. (also known as State Road 300) the roughly 300 foot by 750 foot, 5 acre parcels were typically subdivided into three 100 foot by 435 foot one acre Beach Front parcels with two "First Tier" lots behind the Beachfront lots. These first tier lots have the unique distinction of being on the Gulf Side of the road, so you can get to the beach without crossing a road.
Many people feel that the Beaches in the East End are the most attractive on St. George Island. Of course them would be fightin' words to some of the Plantation folks who feel otherwise. The Bay side of the East End is a beautiful area with lots of Pine Trees, and gorgeous views of St. George Island Sound. Just to the east, in the waters just off the State Park, are some of the best flats and shallow water fishing north of the Keys. There are several small, private, gated Bay front communities in the East End with community docks. Of course many private homes have their own docks as well. 300 Ocean Mile, a town home community of about 100 units is located near the State Park on the Beach Side of the road. 300 Ocean Mile has 1, 2, and 3 Bedroom Units, 2 Pools, Landscaped public areas, and wide dune walkovers to the beach. Just east of 300 Ocean Mile is Sunset Beach, a planned unit development of large Mediterranean style homes with a community pool, brick paved roads, gated entry, and views of both the Bay and Gulf.
St. George Plantation
St. George Plantation is a grouping of "Villages" and other private communities that were platted and recorded over a period of years. The first "Villages" were platted and recorded on August 16th and 17th, 1976. Many more Villages were platted and recorded in the mid 80's. In 1993 and 1994, Casa del Mar and Schooners Landing were platted and recorded, effectively completing the development of the Plantation area land. There were few houses built in the Plantation prior to 1993, so the majority of the roughly 500 homes within the Plantation are relatively new. The low density (mostly one acre lots), underground electricity, architectural controls, and restrictions on removing trees unnecessarily, give the Plantation a very different and more desirable appearance when compared to the Gulf Beaches. The main road through the Plantation is Leisure Lane, named after Leisure Properties, the developers of most of the Plantation. The roads to the Beach Side typically form T's, in that they go straight down to the Beachfront lots, and end at a short road perpendicular to the entry road, heading east and west. These T roads are connected by bike paths, keeping the traffic to a minimum on the Beach Roads, and creating a great recreational facility for bikers, walkers, and runners. The roads turning north from Leisure Lane heading toward the Bay typically meander through the lush vegetation to a cul de sac. There are two community tennis courts, a large community pool, a meeting room (mostly for POA Board Meetings), and many Boardwalks to the Beach spaced approximately every thousand feet, providing great Beach access from anywhere in the Plantation. The first four miles of the Plantation's beachfront lots are almost all approximately 100 feet by 436 feet deep. When you get to Casa Del Mar, one of the latter Plantation developments, the lots shrink to approximately 50 feet by 436. In the 1950's a passage was cut into the Island from Apalachicola Bay to the Gulf of Mexico to enable Apalachicola Fishing Boats to more easily access the Gulf. This body of water is called Bob Sike's Cut, or simply "The Cut" to most Islanders.
The furthest development West on St. George Island is the gated community of Schooners Landing, which has waterfront property on the Gulf, Bay and Cut. "The Cut" is a world class fishing hole. Schooner's Landing is "the Place" for those with the wherewithal to build their dream home, commanding the best and most diverse views on St. George Island. By John Shelby 2003
Schedule some time with one of our REALTORS to walk the land.