Nations Leaves Bi-State With Mission Focused on Regional Cooperation

By on November 29, 2018

From St. Louis Public Radio:  John Nations is stepping down after eight years as president and CEO of Bi-State Development — the agency that operates the Metrolink public transit system among other regional services.

Taulby Roach, a longtime transportation consultant for St. Clair County, is expected to succeed Nations as Bi-State’s next president and CEO, although the board has not made an official announcement.

In 2010, Nations was in his third term as mayor of Chesterfield when he successfully led a campaign in St. Louis County to approve a half-cent sales tax that would provide much-needed funding for public transit. The tax contributed $75 million a year to Bi-State’s budget.

Later that year, when John Nations interviewed for the job of president and CEO of Bi-State, he already had a vision for the company that was known as “Metro” back then.

“Bi-State was originally incorporated to be a regional economic development resource and facilitator for the region,” Nations said in an interview with St. Louis Public Radio in October.

“Frankly, people are surprised to hear it wasn’t incorporated to be a public transit company at all. It was chartered by Congress actually in 1950 to help with regional economic development. My goal when I started out was, I viewed Bi-State as a tremendous potential regional resource at a time when we need regionalism in St. Louis.”

Nations’ first order of business when he took the helm, was to re-brand “Metro” to its original name: Bi-State Development.

In addition to the Metrolink train, bus and Call-a-Ride public transit system, Bi-State owns and operates St. Louis Downtown Airport in Sauget and the Arch Riverboats. It also operates the Gateway Arch Revenue Collections Center and the Arch trams.

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