"The Old Quarry" along Highway 54 may soon be rezoned for development

Dan Field
Lake Ozark City Hall.

An eyesore on Highway 54 that has caught the attention of tens of thousands of motorists for more than a dozen years may be getting a facelift.

The Lake Ozark Board of Aldermen approved the first reading of an ordinance that would allow the rezoning of four parcels of land north of the Osage River Bridge and east of Highway 54 to be rezoned to allow for possible development.

The second and final reading will be at the next regular board of aldermen meeting Feb. 23.

The Planning and Zoning Commission recommended the rezoning at its Feb. 3 regular meeting.

The area is referred to as “the old quarry” where mining operations were halted many years ago. There was talk of commercial and/or retail development there at one time, but those plans never materialized.

Now, Richmond Capital, LLC, is asking that the four parcels be rezoned. Owner of the property is Osage National Commercial Holdings, LLC, of Kansas City, Mo. Mark McLaren, co-founder and vice president of BlueBoat International, LLC, is the applicant for the rezoning on behalf of his partners and Richmond Capital which has an option on the property.

The request is to rezone the parcels as follows, with Parcel A being the northernmost piece of property and Parcel D closest to the Osage River.

Parcel A – from R-1 single family residential to M-1 light Industrial.

Parcel B – from R-1 single family residential to M-1 light industrial.

Parcel C – from M-1 light industrial to C-2 general commercial.

Parcel D – from R-1 single family residential to C-2 general commercial.

Public meeting

McLaren hosted an in-person informational meeting at Osage National Resort in late January prior to the Feb. 3 P&Z meeting and then a virtual meeting to outline the request for rezoning and provide a tentative plan for the property.

He said the most immediate plan is to build an upscale, climate-controlled storage facility on the northernmost parcel of land (Parcel A), which is proposed to be rezoned to M-1 light industrial. He hopes the remaining three parcels will be developed into commercial and retail ventures.

“Our intent is to set the zoning so we can develop this in a way to benefit the City of Lake Ozark through the development of commercial properties whether it be a hotel, a restaurant, or retail, all of those driven by business,” McLaren offered.

The southernmost parcel, that closest to the Osage River, could be developed into a big-box store, although McLaren said nothing specific is in the works.

Harrison Fry, assistant city administrator and community development director, noted that the city believes there is no perceived gain to leave the property zoned as it is, and rezoning would not have a negative impact on the area.

In the city’s 2006 Future Land Use Plan, these lots were identified for commercial/industrial use.

Brief history

The old quarry area has a long history.

Here is an unofficial synopsis:

The quarry started as a sand and gravel operation as the lake grew. During the late 1990s, APAC Missouri became operator of the quarry and added an asphalt plant. After some challenging financial issues involving several subsequent owners and developers, the area came under the ownership of Osage National Holdings, LLC.

The land was at one time presented for major retail, but that never materialized.