Lake James is a 104 acre private lake located just south of Indian River Road west of Kempsville Road in western Virginia Beach, VA. Regent University is our largest neighbor to the west. We are one mile east of Interstate 64 off of the Indian River Rd. exit.
The lake started as a borrow pit for construction of Interstate 64. It was reported that natural springs were encountered during the excavation, creating a freshwater lake a little sooner than expected. Supposedly there is still some heavy equipment at the bottom of the lake because the pumps were unable to keep up with the water flow.
The lake was thought to be spring fed until a study of the lake in 1999. It is now thought that the lake consists primarily of groundwater. It is 80- 90 feet at the deepest point, and has an outflow canal which eventually enters the Elizabeth River.
Homes were built around the lake beginning in 1982-3. There are now 274 homes in the community, with 109 of them lakefront. There is a 12 acre private park for residents which includes a swimming area with sandy beach, a boaters beach, a boat launching ramp, a volleyball area with sand, a picnic area with BBQ grills and tables, children's playground areas, and viewing areas with benches. Additionally there are smaller community park areas at intervals throughout the neighborhood, as well as an additional boat ramp.
Various fish and other freshwater beings have been introduced to the lake since 1983, and have developed their own aquatic ecosystem. Sightings have included bass, catfish, carp, sunfish, eels, turtles, clams, blue crab, and crawfish. Fishing is allowed for residents and their guests. Most fishermen catch and release the fish.
Lake James is a registered bird sanctuary area. There is a wide variety of seagulls, great blue herons, many types of ducks, geese and other native and migrating birds. Additionally, there are many breeds of birds living around the lake. Bald eagles, owls and other "exotic" birds have been sighted over the lake. Purple martin houses are encouraged and there is an ever growing population of these wonderful mosquito eating birds living around Lake James.
Virginia State Police and Virginia Beach Volunteer Rescue Units use the lake (with prior permission from the Lake James Homes Association) for their deep dive qualification on scuba, rescue training, and other water type training.