Mr. R.T. Crow began Lake Saint Louis as a joint development with five other investors in 1966. The initial concept of the investors was to develop a private weekend recreational lake community. However, Mr. Crow felt that the location between two major highways and the westward growth of St. Louis justified the building of a new town. Mr. Crow visited two other new towns - Reston, Virginia and Columbia, Maryland. The more he learned about these communities, the more convinced he became that this area was an excellent location for a first-class new town.
Since there was no way to compromise the two different concepts, the weekend development and the new town, it was decided that Mr. Crow would buy out the other five investors, and in that manner Mr. Crow became the sole developer of Lake Saint Louis (LSL).
The first preliminary plan for Lake Saint Louis was approved by St. Charles County and in June of 1967, the Lake Saint Louis Declaration of Covenants and Restrictions was signed and recorded. During its first twelve years, the sole governing entity in the community was the Community Association. It was not until May, 1975 that the community also became a City under the Revised Statutes of Missouri (RSMO).
Construction began on the dam for a 600-acre lake. During the next five years (1969 to 1974) major accomplishments occurred in Lake Saint Louis. There were 200 families living or building in the area, the LSL Country Club and par 3 golf course were opened, and by 1971, nine holes of the proposed 18-hole golf course were completed. This is now known as Lake Forest Country Club.
During this same period, construction began on the Wharf, a Fire Protection District was established, Harbor Town and Bent Oak were built, and the four-story Office Center (visitor's center) was completed. Also, JoJo's Restaurant (now Denny's) was built, the Shell Service Station was built (now totally rebuilt), and the first fire station was built along the service road.
Mr. Crow filed Chapter 11, Bankruptcy. This was a very difficult year for Lake Saint Louis. The Community Association Board of Directors, who were the only governing entity at this time, found themselves without the leadership they had depended on. A new Community Association Manager was hired and residents pulled together to overcome the fear of losing their private status and becoming a part of another municipality.
By May of 1975, with Mr. Crow out of the picture, and with the threat of annexation from O'Fallon on the East and Wentzville on the West, the residents of Harbor Town petitioned St. Charles County Circuit Court for incorporation of the Town of Harbor Town. The Court granted the petition and in June, 1975, the first town meeting was held. With the approval of the incorporation, the Circuit Court appointed a Board of Trustees:
- Howard Haddock, Chairman
- Charles Bailey
- George Heidelbaugh
- Betty Patton
- David Spitznagel
In December of 1975 the Town boundaries were expanded to include what was known as Phase A, the western-most portion of the City. In 1976 a special census was conducted that counted 2,445 residents.
In 1977 residents voted to change to name of Harbor Town to Lake Saint Louis and became a 4th Class City under the RSMO. Ward voting boundaries were established for two wards, and the first municipal election was held. George Heidelbaugh was elected mayor. Bill Nicholson and Mel Meyer were elected Aldermen for Ward 1, and Ted Finkleston and Larry Goudy were elected Aldermen for Ward 2. The Board of Aldermen established the position of City Administrator.
By 1978 Development Regulations were in place, committees were formed for municipal services, and the City was functioning still with the financial help of the Community Association. Since the CA had a complete staff of people, the city functions were handled by the CA Staff. The CA Security Guards were sent to school and trained and commissioned as Police Officers, the Maintenance Crew for the CA handled the Public Works duties such as snow removal, and the CA Office Staff was provided to cover the day-to-day operations of the City.
1979 to 1980
By the 1979 to 1980 fiscal year, the City had expanded its boundaries to include all of the residential properties now existing in the City Limits as well as the commercial properties at the intersection of Interstate 70.
In July of 1979, the first city payroll for employees was made. The first Police Chief and Police Officers were paid by the City as were two office personnel, City Clerk/Finance Officer and City Development Administrator. In January 1980, the office of City Clerk and Finance Officer was divided and a full time City Administrator was hired who served as both City Administrator and City Development Administrator.
1980 to 1990
By 1980 the census count was 3,842, and in 1982, it was estimated at 4,279 - almost double the Special Census just six years earlier.
In 1982 the City re-districted the Ward Boundaries and created the three Wards. In 2002, because of the increasing population, the Wards were again adjusted. The Ward Boundaries were designed with equal room for anticipated future expansion.
By 1990 the official census count was 7,400. By 2003 it was estimated to be about 12,000.
Today, the City offers full municipal services to the Community. The City has acquired and developed three public parks, a Public Works maintenance facility, a City Hall and Police Facility, and continues to grow even more, expanding south of Highway 40/61.
With the continued efforts for a High Tech Corridor along Highway 40/61 (soon to be I-64), Lake Saint Louis continues to prepare the way for a Commercial and Business area, zoned to accommodate a variety of commercial, office and business uses. The City is committed to installing infrastructure to this area by building roads and providing for the installation of utilities, water and sewer lines to service the area.
Today Lake Saint Louis is the first class town envisioned by the original developer because of the dedication and commitment of subsequent Community Association and City leaders. The City boasts high quality and diversity of housing, well-planned residential and commercial areas, and of course, an abundance of both public and private recreational amenities. All of these factors contribute to make Lake Saint Louis one of the best places in the Midwest to live and call home.