Located at the confluence of the two largest rivers in North America, the intersection of four U.S. interstate highways, and home to six Class I railroads, Saint Louis is a major logistics and distribution center.

Saint Louis is the northernmost port on the Mississippi River that remains ice free, year-round, giving local shippers continuous, cost-effective barge access to the Gulf Coast and beyond.

In addition to the connectivity offered by STL, the Saint Louis region offers unparalleled access to other forms of multi-modal transportation.  


Saint Louis is located at the crossroads of four U.S. interstates (I-70, I-55, I-44, and I-64), with four interstate linkages providing further connectivity (I-255, I-170, I-270, and I-370). Saint Louis’s highway system is efficient and uncongested, allowing easy truck access to the national interstate network that stretches from coast to coast and into Canada and Mexico.

As seen by the map below, one-third of the U.S. population can be reached in less than eight hours by truck, with 90 percent reached in less than 24 hours.



Saint Louis is the third-largest rail commerce center in the United States, with six Class I railroads (BNSF, CN, CSX, KCSR, NS, and UPRR) providing rail access throughout North America.  In 2008, 412 million tons (373,760,112.88 metric tons) of freight originated, terminated, or passed through Missouri by rail.

Black:      Union Pacific 
Blue:        Norfolk Southern 
Red:        Kansas City Southern 
Orange:    Canada National 
Yellow:     CSX 
Pink:        BNSF


Situated at the confluence of the Mississippi and Missouri rivers, Saint Louis is served by all major barge lines, has more than 100 docks and terminal facilities, and is the second-largest inland port by trip ton-miles in the United States. In fact, 29 industrial centers with a combined population of 90 million can be reached by barge from Saint Louis.

1.  Mississippi River
2.  Missouri River
3.  Ohio River
4.  Illinois River
5.  Arkansas River
6.  Tennessee River
7.  Intracoastal Waterway
8.  Tombigbee River


Lower-than-average warehousing, trucking, and labor costs have made Saint Louis an attractive location for logistics and distribution companies—the city is consistently ranked among the top logistics-friendly cities in the United States. 

•     St. Louis was named as a "Five-Star Logistics Metro"  in a 2007 joint
      study  by Expansion Management and Logistics Today magazines.  The
      region placed in the 99th percentile and 2nd among 362 metropolitan areas in
      the US.  The study was based on 10 major categories, including:

          •     Local transportation and distribution (T&D) industry
          •     Road infrastructure, road congestion and road conditions
          •     Interstate highway access
          •     Vehicle taxes & fees
          •     Rail access
          •     Water port access 
          •     Air cargo access
•     In 2007, Expansion Management also ranked St. Louis the 5th best in the
      country in the areas of interstate highway connectivity and railroad service.   

      The state of Missouri has also earned accolades for logistics.  It was ranked
      the best state in the country for manufacturing and logistics, according to 
      two 2008 reports released by Ball State University's Bureau of Business.