Developer announces resort proposal at Lake of the Ozarks

Hotel, entertainment complex is dependent on TIF district approval

Complete with a Lakefront boardwalk and rooftop terraces, the proposed Towne Harbour entertainment and resort complex will have shops, restaurants, retail facilities and two hotels, one of which will be a six-story, 140-room waterfront hotel on the Lake of the Ozarks.

Complete with a Lakefront boardwalk and rooftop terraces, the proposed Towne Harbour entertainment and resort complex will have shops, restaurants, retail facilities and two hotels, one of which will be a six-story, 140-room waterfront hotel on the Lake of the Ozarks.

A proposed waterfront entertainment and resort complex of approximately 164,000 square feet may soon inhabit the longtime vacant Kalfran Lodge property in Osage Beach.

photo

Courtesy of CBRE

Towne Harbour developer Kent Nixon said if the development successfully attains a TIF district, the complex development spans four years and is divided into two phases of construction, seen here.

Kent Nixon of Entertainment Properties, LLC shared initial details of Towne Harbour, which is a hospitality and entertainment district located off Jeffries Road and adjacent to 54 Expressway, at the Sixth Annual Real Estate Symposium Thursday at Osage National Golf Resort in Lake Ozark.

Nixon, who is the developer of the project, said a number of years ago, the former Kalfran Lodge property went into foreclosure and a vision of an entertainment district that houses a hotel inland and by the Lake’s waterfront was created. Currently, Nixon is vigorously pursuing letters of intent from potential commercial tenants before starting the process to acquire a Tax Increment Financing (TIF) district for the development.

According to the Missouri Department of Economic Development, a TIF district allows cities and counties to encourage development in areas of the community that would not develop or redevelop without some type of TIF assistance. TIF districts can pay for certain authorized improvements with a portion of the new property taxes, sales, earnings and other locally collected taxes resulting from the new development. Existing taxes are not impacted.

Under a TIF, bonds are issued to pay for initial construction costs for infrastructure improvements such as sewer, water and streets, and in some instances building construction. The bonds are paid off from the incremented tax dollars earned once the development becomes operational. The City of Osage Beach currently has three approved TIF districts, including John Q. Hammons project, Prewitt’s Point and Dierbergs Lakeview Pointe.

“This project is dependent on a successful TIF application,” Nixon said. “At this point in time, we are in very aggressive negotiations and conversations with potential tenants to get letters of intent. We think that is very important to take that into the TIF process and present to the decision makers that we have the tenants ready to move in.”

Nixon said he hopes to have the letters of intent ready by the end of the year and begin the TIF application process at the beginning of 2014.

“If that application is successful, we hope to be excavating by early next summer,” he said.

Nixon said the construction of the Towne Harbour development would be completed in two phases over a four-year time frame. The first phase includes three mixed-use areas of two-story buildings along the 2,000 feet of total Lakefront frontage at the complex and a three-story, 74-room hotel that sits to the back of the property by Jeffries Road, totaling about 80,000 square feet. Phase 1 also includes 416 parking spots. Phase 2 includes three mixed-use areas of two-story buildings, about 4,000 square feet of additional retail space and the waterfront, six-story hotel that includes about 140 rooms. Phase 2 will have about 84,000 square feet of developed property and 436 parking spots.

The waterfront will include shops, restaurants and retail facilities, and are connected by a boardwalk with boat access and inland access.

“There are some rooftop gardens on many of the buildings to take advantage of the view,” Nixon said. “Depending on the TIF application process and first phase of construction completed in two years, we hope to have tenants moving in in 2015.”

With approximately 40,000 drivers passing by the proposed complex’s location every day, Nixon said this would be the first entertainment and resort complex of its type with both Lakefront and 54 Expressway visibility. He said the development’s investment group has seen some aging and deterioration of products in the hotel and entertainment sector, and in this industry, the public expects a lot.

“We thought the opportunity was right to create a game changer. Maybe that game changer is what swings the pendulum at the Lake in a positive direction and makes some things happen that have been needed for a number of years,” he said.

Nixon agreed with his fellow Real Estate Symposium development panelist Steve Redford that there needs to be an entertainment resort complex that will help drive more visitors and locals to live, stay and shop in the Lake Area.

“You don’t have to drive around very much to know there are a lot of chains that are putting stores at the Lake, but, there is a return on investment that those people require and demand,” Nixon said. “The Lake has to work very hard to increase the population here so that commercial segment doesn’t have to rely on seven to eight months revenue to try and be profitable. This needs to be a year-round revenue center, and it is going to take some population to get there.”

As part of the Real Estate Symposium, which is sponsored and presented by RE/MAX Lake of the Ozarks, Lake Area real estate market statistics were shared with guests. Jeff Krantz, executive vice president of RE/MAX Lake of the Ozarks, said overall there has been increased sales and increased volume through the third quarter of 2013 over last year. He also said there is decreasing inventory and decreasing foreclosures in the total residential market with more home construction sites cropping up this year.

“Values have stabilized this year, and we have seen signs of appreciation in some sectors of the market. Prices have stabilized for the most part, but we are positioned to see appreciation,” he said.

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