'A property that won't come up for sale very often': Former Ready Mix USA plant on the market

Matt Algarin
The former Ready Mix USA plant at 820 Beach Drive is on the market. City leaders are looking into the specifics of the property.

Sandwiched between two city owned properties is a big opportunity for the city of Destin.

The site of the former Ready Mix USA concrete plant is on the market and has caught the attention of city leaders.

"It's something we should really consider looking at," Councilwoman Sandy Trammell told The Log. "This is a property that won't come up for sale very often."

Located at 820 Beach Drive, the 3.9-acre parcel is now adorned with a "For Sale" sign. The property, according to records from the Okaloosa County Property Appraiser's website, is owned by Ready Mix USA LLC, and is valued at $910,847.

Tuscaloosa, Ala.-based attorney Charlye Spiegel Adams is listed on the property appraiser's records. When reached by The Log, Adams deferred comment to a representative from CEMEX USA, which is "a global building materials company that provides high quality products and reliable service to customers and communities throughout the Americas, Europe, Africa, the Middle East, and Asia," according to its website.

CEMEX's network includes 13 cement plants, 46 strategically located distribution terminals, more than 100 aggregate quarries and more than 450 ready-mix concrete plants, the site says.

Sarah Engdhal, the company's director of communications, confirmed that the plant is inactive and the property is indeed for sale.

The city currently owns the 1.19-acre parcel to the north, which is part of Mattie Kelly Park, and the 1.45-acre parcel to the south, which is home to the Joe's Bayou Boat Launch.

If the city were to purchase the property, it would give them an additional 400-feet of waterfront property along Joe's Bayou that could be used for additional picnic areas, playgrounds, beach access area, or park benches to enjoy sunsets.

"There is definitely a need for more boat access points in the city, as well as public access to the water," City Manager Maryann Ustick said.

She told The Log that the city was doing its homework on the property, and city staff would be putting together information for city leaders to look at during an upcoming city council meeting. While she said purchasing the property would be a benefit to the city, she said funds for land acquisition could be hard to come by.

Whether the city can afford the property or not, Trammell said the least the city can do is check on the property and see what it can find out.

"I'm hoping we can at least have a discussion about it. I think this is one of those chances like Royal Melvin Heritage Park,” Trammell said of the harbor-front city-owned property between Dewey Destin’s and Fisherman’s Wharf.