EVANS, Ga. (WJBF) — A nationwide search for the best place to live landed CNN’s Money magazine in Evans, Georgia. The Columbia County community earned the magazine’s top spot due to its affordable homes, low cost of living and family friendly amenities.
“I think it’s awesome,” Kasi Triplett, a Columbia County resident, said. “It’s so family friendly. They have so many different events for families.”
Evans has grown over the last decade. Columbia County is in the process of creating a ‘downtown’ environment by building Evans Towne Center and a performing arts center, which is expected to open in 2021.
This growth is bringing local businesses to the area, including Stay. Social Tap and Table, a restaurant and bar which opened in July.
“Columbia County is really good at bringing together businesses and people,” Renee Hajek, the owner explained.
With growth comes families looking for schools. Columbia County ranks in the top school districts in Georgia, and is sending students to college with AP and honors classes under their belts.
“92 out of every 100 students graduates on time,” Dr. Sandra Carraway, the Columbia County Superintendent of Schools, said. “That’s the highest graduation rate in the 24 largest districts in Georgia.”
County Administrator Scott Johnson tells NewsChannel 6 it’s not just the leaders of Columbia County who are responsible for helping Evans grab Money magazine’s top spot.
“We have great citizens in Columbia County,” Johnson said. “They’re very proud of their community.”
Moving forward, Johnson says the county plans to keep expanding Evans and listen to the residents who make the community great.
“I think we’ve always been number one,” Johnson said. “To have someone else recognize that we are is certainly an honor.”