MDC opens new Missouri River boat ramp in Cooper County

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OVERTON, Mo. — The Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) has opened a new river access and boat ramp to replace the former Taylors Landing access on the Missouri River.

At its former location on the north side of the Interstate 70 bridge, an estimated 12,000 visitors per year used Taylors Landing River Access. Erosion and flood damage to the access road made further maintenance cost-prohibitive, forcing MDC to close the access in its old location.

With a shared commitment to ensuring all Missourians have safe, reliable access to natural resources such as the Missouri River, MDC developed the new Taylors Landing site on the south side of the Interstate 70 bridge, working closely with partner agencies including the Missouri Department of Natural Resources, US Army Corps of Engineers, US Fish and Wildlife Service, Big Muddy National Wildlife Refuge, and US Environmental Protection Agency.

“The Missouri River offers many great opportunities for recreational uses such as floating, wildlife watching, angling and hunting,” said MDC Fisheries Management Biologist Darby Niswonger. “This new access point will connect visitors to recreational opportunities, while also renewing critical access for emergency services on the river.”

The new Taylors Landing River Access offers a parking lot that meets Americans with Disabilities Act standards and a concrete boat ramp off of the existing Cumberland Church Road. The boat ramp will provide an important public access point for river users between the upstream Franklin Island Access in Howard County, and the downstream Providence Access in Boone County.

At a ribbon-cutting ceremony Monday morning, Cooper County Fire Protection District Lieutenant William Johnson noted the importance of the new river access for emergency operations.

“As the safety officer for Cooper County Fire Protection District, I want to tell you, this boat ramp is a critical site for this county,” said Johnson. “The Taylors Landing access provides us with a critical asset in order to gain access to the river for water rescues and to assist where we may be needed for other emergencies. It will increase our access and decrease our response times.”

To access the new Taylor’s Landing, visitors will take Highway 179 south of Interstate 70, turn east on Cumberland Church Road, and proceed to the parking lot and boat ramp on the southwest bank of the Missouri River.