Commissioners and director dedicate new Kansas City Regional Office

KANSAS CITY Mo -- Members of the Missouri Conservation Commission and the director of the Missouri Department of Conservation (MDC) on Monday (June 13) dedicated the new MDC Kansas City regional office and headquarters for the James A. Reed Memorial Conservation Area.

Anita Gorman, a former Commission member from Kansas City, was asked to help with the ribbon cutting and joined members of the current commission and MDC Director Bob Ziehmer in wielding the scissors. All commissioners were present: Becky Plattner of Grand Pass, Don Johnson of St. Louis, Don Bedell of Sikeston and Wiliam “Chip” McGeehan of Marshfield.

“First and foremost it will serve the public,” said Plattner.

The building and grounds opened May 2 at 12405 S.E. Ranson Road on the northeast corner of the Reed Area, which borders Lee’s Summit, Lake Lotawana and Greenwood.

Supervisors and field staff such as foresters and biologists will be based at the regional office.

Ziehmer noted that besides serving the Kansas City metro area, the office serves conservation work over a 12-county area from Vernon County in the south to Platte County in the north and east to cities such as Sedalia, Warrensburg, Warsaw and Clinton.

The new office provides cost savings because it enabled closing two other MDC offices;  a rented regional office building in Blue Springs and a rented office in Liberty.

Incorporated into the new building are green design features such as energy efficient lighting and a geothermal heating and cooling system. There is a classroom for conservation programs and training, which was not available at the old regional office or former Reed Area headquarters.

“We feel the classroom and training center will provide us with additional opportunities to serve citizens,” Ziehmer said. “Missouri has world class outdoor recreation such as hunting and fishing, and all the credit goes to Missouri citizens.”

The Reed Area has strong ties to both conservation and Kansas City history. Nell Donnelly Reed, founder of the Nelly Don clothing line, donated the area’s first 731 acres in 1952 to honor her husband, James A. Reed, a former Kansas City mayor and U.S. Senator from 1911 to 1929. The area is now expanded to 3,084 acres.

“Now the area has a new headquarters to serve those who visit the lakes, meadows and woods here,” Plattner said.

For more information, call 816-655-6250, or visit www.missouriconservation.org and search "Reed Wildlife Area."