Heliport & Helicopter Operations

St. Louis Downtown Airport is home to a multitude of helicopters, many of which make frequent use of its heliport. Located atop a deck barge moored on the Mississippi River levee, the KCPS heliport is the only FAA-approved floating heliport located on an inland waterway. The heliport is available during daylight hours under visual flight rules, and can accommodate two helicopters simultaneously.

Technical Information

Heliport ID: MO7 (Letters M & O, number seven)
Air Traffic Control: “Downtown Tower” on 119.925 MHz. (The heliport lies within St. Louis Downtown Airport’s Class D airspace and contact with the control tower is mandatory.)
St. Louis Area Discrete Helicopter Frequency: 123.025 for additional communications as needed
Location: N 38°37.52′ W 090°10.98′ — A 175′ X 54′ deck barge moored 50′ north of the Gateway Arch
Elevation: 385 feet Mean Sea Level, subject to Mississippi River level changes. (NOTE: During high water periods with the river level above 29 ft., the heliport is not accessible to land due to river water flowing over the boarding ramps. The current river level and predictions are located here.)
Services: None. The heliport is normally unattended from November through March. Fuel, maintenance, long-term parking, and other services are available 3 miles SE at St. Louis Downtown Airport (KCPS).
Prior Coordination Required: Due to limited capacity and the sensitivity of air operations near a national monument, advance coordination is required. Submit a coordination request form via fax to 618-337-7578 or by filling out this online form. Operations requested before 9:00 am or after 5:00 pm must be requested at least one day in advance. Confirm your approval to operate before landing via telephone at 618-337-6060 or e-mail.
Special Operating Procedures Apply: Do not overfly any portion of the Jefferson National Expansion Memorial (the National Park grounds include the land surrounding the Gateway Arch and Old Courthouse.) For noise abatement, avoid overflight of the Soulard and Benton Park neighborhoods to the south. (Click here for a map of those neighborhoods.)

Heliport Operation Request Form

If you are looking to operate to/from the St. Louis Downtown Heliport, you will need to complete this form: Online Request Heliport Form | PDF Request Heliport Form
The Heliport’s characteristics require additional knowledge and specific operational procedures at a cost of $50.00 per use. The heliport is intended for passenger/cargo loading and unloading, and short-term parking only. Helicopters should not be left unattended.

All normal approaches should be made from either the east or south. Approaches and departures should NOT be made on the west side to avoid overflight of the National Park grounds and people/vehicle traffic on the levee.

Flight paths for take-off and landing should be parallel to the shoreline for emergency landing areas. Routine approaches/departures perpendicular to the river channel should be avoided for safety reasons.

During times of high west winds, additional attention to the flight path on final approach is needed due to the Gateway Arch and buildings creating unusual wind currents. As a result, it may be required to make large power adjustments during approach.

Flight under bridges should be avoided during normal operations. (During an emergency, flight under a bridge may be your safest option – use it if needed! If you fly under a bridge, be prepared to provide detailed written documentation of the situation, if requested.)

The pilot should not lift off until they have been “cleared” by the “thumbs up” sign from the heliport attendant (if present).

Making prior coordination is required before operating to or from the KCPS heliport. Landing and parking fees apply. (Long-term parking and services are available three miles SE at the St. Louis Downtown Airport, FAA ID Code KCPS)

The heliport is to be used for passenger or cargo loading and unloading only. This restriction is due to the limited number of parking spots available. Long-term parking, overnight parking, and other services are available nearby at the St. Louis Downtown Airport (KCPS).

No unauthorized persons will be allowed on the flight deck. All passengers must be escorted to and from the aircraft by the pilot or heliport personnel.

Don’t forget to contact “Downtown Tower” on 119.925 and remember DO NOT FLY OVER THE GATEWAY ARCH GROUNDS!

Scenic Helicopter Tours

Scenic helicopter tours are available from Gateway Helicopters Tours, Inc. Reservations are not required. Call 314-496-4494 or visit online for information. Additional riverfront activity information is available at the Gateway Arch web site.

Owned and managed by Bi-State Development

For more information, contact the following:
St. Louis Downtown Airport, 618-337-6060 or via e-mail.

Other heliports within the city include those at the Mississippi riverfront at the Gateway Arch (St. Louis Downtown Airport), Anheuser Busch Brewery, Arch Aeromedical Helicopters, and the many hospitals in the area. In addition, traffic and news helicopters operate over the main highways and news scenes, and tour helicopters conduct scenic flights around the St. Louis area. All helicopters operating within the airport’s Class D airspace should be in contact with the Downtown Tower. Use caution to see and avoid them.

Most helicopter pilots monitor the St. Louis Area Discrete Helicopter Frequency, 123.025.