A transportation bill in Texas included an amendment that capped fines for unpaid tolls on roads operated by the Texas Department of Transportation. Transportation officials believe the legislature could do the same for other tolling agencies around the state, and they say the legislation is a wake-up call for tolling agencies that tack on penalties and fines.
Tom Skancke, executive director of the Western Regional Alliance, writes that America's infrastructure needs a major investment but that the gas tax no longer provides enough revenue. He argues that more toll roads would help solve the funding issue, and he cites several initiatives, including tolled express lanes on State Route 91 in California, as examples.
Randy Cole, executive director of the Ohio Turnpike, offered agency updates recently, noting that most of the planned construction this season will take part in the western part of the state. In addition, tolls are expected to increase 2.7% annually until 2023, and the turnpike broke a record for the number of vehicles using it last year, at almost 55 million.
At one point, the idea was to extend managed toll lanes on Interstate 95 in Virginia all the way south to Spotsylvania County, but that's changed. Transurban, the company behind the project, doesn't think it's fiscally viable to extend the lanes that far based on a 2015 study by the Virginia Department of Transportation.
The Texas Department of Transportation has completed construction on managed toll lanes on Interstate 35E, and the lanes should open today. The lanes are designed to keep vehicles traveling at a minimum of 55 mph, and rates will be fixed for the first six months.
Lawmakers in Wisconsin cannot agree on a funding solution to fix the state's roads and bridges, which are some of the worst in the country, and this editorial contends that tolling interstates is a reasonable solution. Lawmakers appear to be headed in that direction, but it could take years for Congress to give the state permission.
The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development wants to study connected and autonomous vehicle technology and has chosen Arcadis US to help. The company has been awarded a $2 million contract to analyze emerging vehicle technologies and keep the state agency up to date on trends.
Card Sound Road in North Key Largo, Fla., still has toll booths, but not for long. A $2 million project to convert the road to all-electronic tolling could start this summer and finish up early next year.
President Donald Trump's $1 trillion infrastructure plan could have a hard time in Congress, which expects to hear some details about it this month. This article discusses five potential hurdles, including midterm elections and opposition from fiscal conservatives and Democrats.
A Juniper Research report said vehicle-to-vehicle technology and hardware will be included in about half of new vehicles in the next five years, totaling about 35.4 million. The report also said that as V2V and self-driving technology become more commonplace, most vehicles will use about 1 terabyte of data on a daily basis.
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