Skip to comments.Would pay-to-drive solve congestion problems?
Posted on 09/13/2010 8:15:34 AM PDT by Willie Green
WASHINGTON - Imagine having to pay to travel on most of the major roads in the region.
The idea creating 1,650 miles of "variably priced" lanes on Capital Beltway, Interstates 270, 66 and 95, Route 50, the George Washington Parkway and others, is being floated as a "what-if" scenario by area transportation officials.
"Congestion is a major threat to the economic vitality of the region and the quality of life its residents enjoy," says a new report from the National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board.
Charging a variable toll to drive major commuter routes would increase speeds 15 mph to 20 mph on average, according to estimates. Officials say that widespread tolls would help minimize their overall cost.
"This is not a proposal, it's a 'what if' study that provides very interesting insight into the implications of tolling for our region," says Arlington County Board Member Chris Zimmerman.
The report emphasizes that this analysis is "designed to elicit discussion, not to provide conclusive answers."
Other "what if" scenarios explore the expansion of bus service, changing patterns of development and the impact of workers moving closer to their jobs.
The National Capital Region Transportation Planning Board meets Wednesday to discuss the report.
Perhaps...but it sounds an awful lot like proposals to force people to the city.
What do they expect people to do? NOT drive to work? Not everyone lives 3 minutes from a Metro stop!
How about that we test this idea on registered Democrats and democrat lobbyists who live or work in the capital area?
These self-centered governmental morons will do ANYTHING to get more money for their lame-brained ideas and programs. Haven’t people already “paid” to build and use the roads????????? Vote out their masters. Starve the beast.
Not everyone lives 3 minutes from a Metro stop!
Even a 20 minute drive to Metro is better than 45 minutes stuck in gridlock.
This is another idiot scheme cooked up by Socialists to force people into behavior they approve of. The proponents of this 'plan' should be dragged into the streets, tarred and feathered, and then run out of town on a rail.
when we buy gas, when we register our cars, tolls, etc.
Unless stopped, the socialists won't stop until they get 90% of our income in taxes and fees. THEY, who produce NOTHING, and get double and more in their pay checks and the very best of benefits - all paid from OUR POCKETS look upon OUR paychecks as THEIR money -
‘tis a puzzlement.
Transportation i.e. efficient - and ACCEPTABLE TO USERS - means of moving people and goods seems to be well down the list of priorities to these so-called officials. Instead, they pursue one square-peg-round-hole 'solution' after another.
The idea creating payment to tax payers to file, is being floated as a "what-if" scenario by officials.
There fixed it!
Correct-a-mundo. It's also called Registration fees. We already pay for the roads 20 different ways.
In case you haven't noticed, WG is a proponent of the UN proposal Agenda 21 to do exactly that.
Thats what all of his choo choo articles are about.
This sound like a conservative?
“The “invisible hand” also provides us with the world's most diseased prostitutes, the most violent drug dealers and the most bizarre perverts and pornographers.
"Thank God our Founding Fathers empowered our Federal Government to place restraints on the savage excesses of a “market economy””
The ONLY thing this would do is create heavy traffic on side streets resulting in lots more road construction to widen streets ( do I smell more union pay-offs? )
It just shows how brilliant the folks that plan road construction projects are: “Let’s work on every single road at the exact same time!”
Oh wait - It’s an election year, so in reality it’s just another ploy to make the taxpaying suckers think their tax dollars are actually being used for something instead of paying for illegal aliens and their anchor babies.
Instead the Progressive Fascist political machine can simply quit skimming money off those funds to pay for their "green" mass transit schemes.
If these "Mass Transit" schemes are so desirable, they should be justifiable to the votes as stand alone projects instead of being the hidden parasites living off the gas tax fund.
Growth of centralized government means increased traffic congestion for DC.
What is the traffic like in DC on a day that is a Federal holiday?
How about we just cut down the size of government and all those bureaucrats to ease the traffic problems?
People are now considered a sort of tolerated infection or parasite on government. We exist at their pleasure only insofar as useful to the collection of revenue.
BEST CASE scenario, it would work like this:
At first, 30% or so of drivers who have an alternate route will take it, or take public transport, relieving some traffic on the highway in question.
The other 70% have no other viable choice and are asked to bend over and pay.
After a few months of “traffic is so much better now,” the other 30% will decide it’s worth it to pay the toll, and start doing so, making the road congested again.
Voila. Traffic still bad, and government coffers now full of toll cash.
Firing 2/3 of the bureaucrats would solve ALL their congestion problems.
We pay through the nose now, it’s caklled GAS TAXES, ?State and Federal!
They are probably higher now but in 1974 they were 86% from ground to pump!!
We already pay to drive on public roads. It's called "Fuel taxes".
As usual, you are wrong.
Fuel taxes and user fees barely provide half of the Highway Subsidy.
I sort of don’t care, because you shouldn’t have to be wealthy to drive on the roads in this country.
As everyone points out, our tax dollars do pay for the roads.
On the other hand, the scarce good here is the right of way. A highway can only hold so many cars at peak hour. The only two ways to decide who gets the scarce good is by seeing who is willing to wait in traffic (allocating by time) or seeing who is willing to pay (allocating by cost.) Most economists would argue that allocating by cost is more efficient. I am surprised by the freeper opposition.
The point of those making the existing tax argument is well taken, but currently 25-33% of useable roadway is accessible only to multi-occupant vehicles. And in the case of I-66, 100% inaccessible to single-occupant vehicles at peak times.
How about no use of the public roads except for government vehicles?
That’d clear almost all of the traffic, minimize commute times, and, in general, clean up all of the DC traffic problems. Worked well in Moscow, or so I’m told.
We’d have to increase the vehicle taxes, though, since the gas taxes would, obviously, decrease. Second thought, increase the gas tax too, to pay for the commuter rail.
All sides would be winners, since while the “important” wouldn’t be inconvenienced, the unwashed would have the time they spend on their budgeting and travel planning minimized, since they’d have neither money to spend nor travel options.
Maybe if the didn't p*** it away on projects other than roads they'd have it.
It doesn't really matter. This is a stupid idea cooked up by a bunch of socialist thieves.
I can't wait for November...we're going to toss jokers like this out of their comfortable taxpayer provided jobs by the thousands.
We're going to kill off their stupid taxpayer sponsored 'mass transit' and 'high speed rail' projects by the hundreds.
The wailing and gnashing of socialist teeth like yours will bring joy to my heart.
See you in November Willie.
The opposition comes because the LIBs/Asshats are constantly spending gasoline tax money on bike paths and mass transportation...not building roads.
We already pay...It’s called a gas tax.
No kidding, I already pay to drive.
IOW a stealth road tax.
what would help congestion is “autodrive” cars where these senile or clueless drivers who don’t know where they are or what they are doing can have a GPS computer drive the car for them.
We have cars that self park, we should already have cars that self drive.
That would reduce traffic and accidents around 20-30%, I'd bet.
slaves must obey their DC overlords.
Brilliant analysis - I can see your entire scenario unfolding in that way.
Traffic congestion in the DC area could be thinned substantially by sharp cuts in the size of the Federal Government.
That’s an interesting position for you Willie. It would seem that you now are against building costly mass transit and high speed rail as none of these systems is self-sustaining.
I-66 is the only road that I could see them tolling. Extend the Dulles Tollway from the Airport to I-66 and through to Downtown. And, charge EVERYBODY tolls, including those going to the airport (except delivery trucks, buses, and taxis- a special airport rate in the cab would make up for this).
Wouldn't you love to learn what the combined annual salaries of these jokers is? I know I would.
I think I've identified one of the first organizations to be defunded, defanged, and repealed out of existence come January.
Ummm, wouldn't it do this by forcing traffic onto side roads?
How much gas taxes do electric and hybrids pay?
This is about cities panicing and trying to replace revenue before it leaves.
Think red light cameras.
Fire the police, or lay off police, and replace them with “traffic enforcement” cameras.
The goal is to automate the pick pocket taxation.
We all already pay to drive in the form of state and federal gasoline taxes (on top of automobile sales taxes, property taxes, license and registration fees, toll fees, etc., etc.)
This is simply a way to slip in yet another layer of taxes. Increasing any of the existing taxes causes too much political backlash (pesky voters). By continuously coming up with new taxes, it keeps the sheeple from knowing exactly how much taxes they are paying.
My last post basically lines it out. People don’t drive the Beltway in DC (or any city) for fun, they do it because they have a job to get to.
happens all the time with commercial truckers.
the solution for the tax and spenders is to set up exits which MANDATE autopay and prohibit traffic everywhere else.
“Fire the police, or lay off police, and replace them with traffic enforcement cameras.”
Can’t happen soon enough!
Back to the law of the jungle!!!!!!
Silly me...I thought that was why we paid state and Federal gasoline taxes!!!!
It wouldn't apply to all lanes; the toll lane would be a commuter choice. As is, we have HOV lanes that restrict access based on the number of occupants. This is a wholly inefficient allocation of a significant portion of roadway. By definition, a variable toll lane would be most efficient in an economic sense. An HOV lane is an enviro-debacle. I pay for the lane, and am unable to use it unless I enlist a comrade (or sometimes two) to ride with me. And the use of the word "comrade" is intentional.
I had a conversation with my congressional candidate back in June. He said the high speed rail fantasy is DOA. He went further and told me that it was never even a likelyhood and the promoters knew it. It was always about dangling non existent money in front of unions, city councils, and planners. (Theft)
He has seen preliminary plans and says the eminent domain and evironmental fights alone would triple the costs by his conservative estimates.
Just raise the price high enough and there won’t be any congestion.