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The Lake News Online
  • Board approves Key Largo intersection revamp

  • It’s a deal.

    The Osage Beach Board of Aldermen unanimously agreed to move forward with a plan to revamp the controversial Key Largo interchange and accept a specific proposal by MoDOT.
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  • It’s a deal.
    The Osage Beach Board of Aldermen unanimously agreed to move forward with a plan to revamp the controversial Key Largo interchange and accept a specific proposal by MoDOT.
    And, the board put in place the possible development of an outer road that would extend the now-closed Osage Beach Parkway to Y Road.
    The decisions were unanimous, and came after considerable discussion with MoDOT District Engineer David Silvester and State Rep. Rocky Miller.
    The Osage Beach Board of Aldermen meeting opened with a statement read during the public comments portion of the agenda by Kim Loehr, owner of Interior Motifs. She has been instrumental in keeping the city and public focused on the plight of businesses affected by closing the Parkway, problems with Key Largo and opening of Highway 54 expressway. About a dozen members of the estimated 40 members of the audience stood in support of the west end issue as she read her statement.
    Three other concerned citizens voiced their opinions during the public comments, much of it a rehash of comments made over the last year.
     
    The agreement
    MoDOT offered the board three options, which were discussed in detail before a decision was made. The final decision, at an estimated cost of $396,402 to be shared 50-50, was as follows:
    •Build an exit ramp from eastbound expressway to Key Largo/Osage Beach Parkway ($116,861)
    •Build an onramp from Key Largo/Osage Beach Parkway to eastbound Expressway ($181,615)
    •Modifications to Key Largo ($51,332)
    •Engineering ($46,594)
    The city’s portion is estimated at $85,000. In a letter to the city, Silvester said that because MoDOT already had planned to build an on-ramp, it would pay for that portion and the remainder (with MoDOT paying engineer costs) would be split with the city.
    Silvester said the earliest MoDOT could add a job to its STIP (State Transportation Improvement Plan) program would be in September with a possible letting in November.  “We are also committed to signing the intersection as an exit,” Silvester said in his letter. “This would increase the number of Osage Beach exits from six to seven. We will modify and change the placement of this sign accordingly.”
    Additionally, he said, the state will place a sign that says something similar to "Osage Beach Parkway / Business 54" with a 45-degree arrow depicting the exit ramp.  MoDOT also plans to install lighting at the Route 54 and Key Largo intersection.
    Silvester also said MoDOT was not “willing to take that risk” when asked by an alderman about making Key Largo a left-hand, westbound turn as well. Silvester said the potential for accidents would increase substantially if a westbound turn was included.
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    Outer Road
    There is no money budgeted by either the city or state for an on-ramp from the west end of Osage Beach Parkway to Y Road. However, aldermen asked both MoDOT and the staff to develop plans as soon as possible. MoDOT has indicated interest in a one-way, eastbound outer road, but the board has pushed for a two-way road to completely open the Parkway.
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