Data from the 2010 Census shows a sort of urban sprawl in the Westside area though with less urban and more sprawl.


Data from the 2010 Census shows a sort of urban sprawl in the Westside area though with less urban and more sprawl.

The four tracts that cover the majority of the Westside in the 2010 U.S. Census show more people living outside of incorporated areas than within them.

The full-time population in these tracts at the time of the decennial survey totaled 13,580.
Only about 11 percent — 1,520 permanent residents — lived within the three towns in this area. The City of Laurie had a population of 945, the Village of Sunrise Beach 431 and the Village of Gravois Mills 144.

Yet the population — especially closer to the heart of the lake — is relatively dense, more comparable to suburban areas around the state than regular rural areas.

The two Census tracts that cover mostly the 65079 (Sunrise Beach) zip code had a total population of 5,395 and a density of 88.4 to 199.9 people per square mile.

The Greenview area was not included in this analysis due to its inclusion in a tract that curves south to the area just west of Camdenton. However, its Census tract as well as one to the east (north of Camdenton) shares similar population density to the Sunrise Beach area.

Covering a larger area geographically than the Sunrise Beach tracts, southern Morgan County (with a northern boundary of Big Buffalo, McCasland, Hwy. TT and Golden Beach roads) had a population of 8,185 and a density of 30 to 88.3 people per square mile. Western Camden County tracts had a similar population density.

In contrast, central and northern Morgan County and southeastern Camden County tracts, which lie away from the lake area - had a density of just 10 to 29.9 people per square mile.

On the other hand, the cities of Camdenton, Osage Beach and Versailles as well as the Horseshoe Bend area have a population density of 200 to 999.9 people per square mile.

With a vacancy rate of around 58 percent, the Westside matched the rest of the lake area in its high seasonal population.

According to the Census, there were a total of 15,722 housing units in these four tracts with only 6,452 serving as primary occupied homes. Given the average household size of approximately 2.2 and accounting for some regular vacancies, the summertime population with seasonal residents such as snowbirds and weekenders would total around 33,000.