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History

Leadership, Collaboration, & Innovation

History

Having been an integral part of hundreds of regional growth success stories since our inception, Bi-State Development stands tall – and alone – as the embodiment of “the process behind the progress” in our region.

Established in 1949 through an interstate compact between Missouri and Illinois, ratified by the U.S. Congress and signed by President Harry S. Truman in 1950, Bi-State Development was created to serve and enrich the region. Fulfilling that mission, our rich history includes planning interstate highways, operating a power plant, and reducing pollution in the Mississippi River. We have the longest-standing partnership with the National Parks Service, and made possible the trams that take you to the top of the Gateway Arch.

We are leaders in public transit – world renowned for our reliability and efficiency. Initiating progress, we were one of the first transit agencies in the nation to operate wheelchair-lift equipped buses in regular service. Our St. Louis Downtown Airport (formerly Parks) has a rich history of its own. Today, the airport and its surrounding business park deliver nearly $600 million in economic impact to southern Illinois. What’s more, last year leaders chose us to run a regional freight district; coordinating with industry and government to enhance and grow the $6 billion in goods traveling through our area by rail, road, river, and runway.

In our care is the iconic Eads Bridge, an integral component of the region’s $8 billion network of transportation infrastructure. We are performing a complete rehabilitation of this historic landmark so that it can continue to serve as a critical link between Missouri and Illinois for generations to come.

BSD is a key partner with CityArchRiver in current Gateway Arch improvements that will transform the visitor experience, not only at the Gateway Arch, but also on the St. Louis Riverfront and in downtown St. Louis.

Bi-State Development is continuously dedicated to fostering economic development in the St. Louis region. With our strong foundation, we will be the gateway to growth on both sides of the river.