The blast lasted about 1 second, but the long-term impact could benefit the City of Lake Ozark – and the Lake area -- for decades.
Magruder Companies used 3,000 pounds of explosives Tuesday morning, Dec. 15, to loosen rocks and dirt at its quarry in the northeast corner of the city limits, opening the door to what Lake Ozark officials hope will become the first industrial park located within the city limits. The rubble will be used by Magruder for various projects including the Highway 54 intersection not far away.
The potential industrial area would have easy access from Highway 54 and the city says it would provide a viable location for future industry for the city.
“This has been one of our goals in recent year as we realize the importance of diversifying our local economy,” Mayor Gerry Murawski commented. “It’s one of the most significant long-term accomplishments we’ve realized. It opens the door to expanding our economic development opportunities which could potentially include more jobs.”
The 210 acres of quarried area would eventually be leveled and made available for light industrial manufacturing, warehouses or distribution centers. Magruder owns additional acres in that area that could be developed commercially.
The industrial park paves the way for the next generation of development in Lake Ozark and will revolutionize the Lake Ozark community and the Lake region, city officials say.
City Administrator Dave Van Dee says Magruder has communicated to the city that the company will be focusing the bulk of its quarrying activities at this site, which should help make it a marketable piece of developable ground more quickly. Van Dee said the timing of the property being ready for development will depend heavily on the need for rock and gravel in the region: the more rock needs to be quarried, the faster the clearing will go. He said at the earliest, the site could be ready in five years, with enough room for a first phase of development and buffer zone between that and further quarrying operations further into the property.
As an interesting aside, Clark Bollinger and other Magruder officials conducted an uncooked egg experiment.
Before the blast, they placed four eggs about 50 feet behind the blast area. One pair was buried and another set was laid on top of the ground in plastic bags. After the blast, they showed a group of onlookers including city staff and media that the raw eggs had not broken.
At other Magruder quarries, some residents have complained about varying quarry activities, alleging property damage by the blasts. But Magruder says the egg experiment supports their contention that basements and foundations at nearby homes and businesses are not damaged by the blasting as part of the company’s operation.