The Board of Commissioners of Bi-State Development approved the operating and capital budget for the Fiscal Year (FY) that begins July 1, 2018, at the Board meeting on April 27. The budget outlines operational expenses before depreciation of $369 million for FY 2019, and projected operational expenses before depreciation of $378 million for FY 2020 and $387 million for FY 2021. The budget does not include a fare increase for the Metro transit system in FY 2019.
The approved budget allocates resources to operate Bi-State Development; the Metro Transit system; operations at the Gateway Arch and the Gateway Arch Riverfront Attractions; St. Louis Downtown Airport; the St. Louis Regional Freightway; the Bi-State Development Research Institute; and Arts In Transit, a non-profit entity that supports public art and community engagement programs.
“The annual budget process is part of our commitment to transparency and accountability, and it ensures we are managing the financial resources entrusted to us in the best way possible,” said John Nations, President and Chief Executive Officer of Bi-State Development. “Our goal is to maximize the full potential of these resources through sound investment, planning and by providing our enterprises and our employees with the tools they need to serve the St. Louis region.”
Bi-State Development also outlined a three-year capital budget totaling $726 million, with $698 million allocated to Metro transit, $22 million to St. Louis Downtown Airport, and $6 million to the Gateway Arch and the Gateway Arch Riverfront Attractions. Major capital expenditures planned for this period include upgrades to MetroLink light rail vehicles, rehabilitation of the MetroLink tunnel below Union Station, construction work for the new Cortex MetroLink Station and the extension of the platform at the Central West End MetroLink Station. Also included in the three-year capital budget are taxiway improvements, development of a new run-up area and other infrastructure improvements at St. Louis Downtown Airport; and development of a new visitor experience at the Tucker Theatre, and upgrades to lighting and signage at the Gateway Arch.
The budget includes operational projections for multiple fiscal years to provide a better resource for long-range planning and strategy development. Each year, these projections will be reassessed to ensure their accuracy, and they will be evaluated and adjusted, if necessary. The budget must be approved by the Bi-State Development Board of Commissioners each year.
About Bi-State Development
Bi-State Development (BSD) owns and operates St. Louis Downtown Airport and the Gateway Arch Riverboats, as well as operates the Gateway Arch Revenue Collections Center and Gateway Arch trams. BSD is the operator of the Metro public transportation system for the St. Louis region, which includes the 87 vehicle, 46-mile MetroLink light rail system; a MetroBus vehicle fleet of approximately 400 vehicles operating on 79 MetroBus routes; and Metro Call-A-Ride, a paratransit fleet of 120 vans. BSD also operates the Bi-State Development Research Institute and the St. Louis Regional Freightway, the region’s freight district.