West of the Ashley, ... like Mt. Pleasant, has an appeal that is difficult to describe. James Island, John’s Island, Wadmalaw Island, and “West Ashley” are connected by a set of bridges with a charm all their own. Vistas of marshes, creeks, and rivers are everywhere.
Expansion continues out past Main Road on John's Island as the remaining parcels are developed closer to town. West of the Ashley is very close to Folly Beach, our personal favorite among Charleston area beaches. There is more of a rustic, “beach surfer community” kind of feel than the more updated Isle of Palms and Sullivan's Island. The beach is more prone to erosion than her northeastern cousin, but property values continue to rocket skyward at a 3-digit pace 2003-2004 until the economic downturn on 2007 which is recovering with better property values today.
Even though Charleston County overall doesn’t perform very well, there are some schools with good numbers.
Traffic to downtown used to be a huge problem from John’s and James Island and has been significantly relieved by James Island Connector which rapidly transports commuters over the Ashley River directly into downtown in 3 minutes. Other traffic issues remain out Ashley River Road or Route 61. There is a fairly new bypass that has relieved some of the congestion, but much of the traffic is still bound to the two-lane route 61. Hwy 61 is a historic corridor lined with Live Oak trees draping over the roadway which, while beautiful, makes widening unlikely in the near future.