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  • Exclusive: I-66 toll construction to take down 2-year old high-tech traffic management system

    03/05/2018 8:24:36 AM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 10 replies
    WTOP ^ | January 31, 2018 | Max Smith
    WASHINGTON — The two-year-old high-tech system that allows the Interstate 66 “red X” lanes to be opened outside of rush hour will be taken down within the next 12 months, WTOP has learned.The active traffic management system, which includes digital signs over each lane on a stretch of about 12 miles of I-66 just outside the Capital Beltway, cost $39 million. Work began in 2013; the system was first activated in September 2015.Construction on two HOV or toll lanes in each direction between the Beltway and Gainesville is set to ramp up this spring, and that will disrupt the system....
  • Interstate 73 may benefit from Trump's infrastructure plan

    02/21/2018 7:54:50 AM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 10 replies
    WBTW News 13 ^ | February 13, 2018 | Chris Spiker
    MYRTLE BEACH, SC (WBTW) - The South Carolina leg of a proposed interstate that would end on the Grand Strand may benefit from President Trump's infrastructure plan. Some leaders say Interstate 73 construction could be approved sooner, but paying for the highway could change. The president's plan says the federal government would pay for 20 percent of a project, with more costs shifted towards local governments, the private sector and people. That means if I-73 is built, it will likely include tolls. "I think the odds for I-73 are looking better and better," says Brad Dean, president and CEO of...
  • Gov. Terry McAuliffe’s last transportation deal: 10 more miles of toll lanes on Interstate 95

    02/09/2018 10:44:38 AM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 23 replies
    The Washington Post ^ | January 10, 2018 | Luz Lazo
    Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe (D) announced a deal Wednesday that will add 10 more miles of express lanes to the Interstate 95 corridor, expanding the system of high-occupancy toll (HOT) lanes to Fredericksburg by 2022. As part of the agreement, the private company building the lanes will give the state $277 million upfront to cover costs of a bridge over the Rappahannock River and other improvements along the corridor, Virginia transportation officials said. The deal essentially moves forward a 10-mile extension from Garrisonville Road (Route 610) in Stafford County to Route 17 in the Fredericksburg area. It also builds on...
  • Mixed reaction to leaked infrastructure plan

    01/25/2018 7:16:42 AM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 6 replies
    Fleet Owner ^ | January 23, 2018 | Sean Kilcarr
    A leaked six-page memo that purportedly outlines some of the key principles of the Trump administration’s long-awaited infrastructure plan is drawing fire from several corners of the trucking industry – especially regarding plans to allow states to broaden interstate tolling efforts and commercialize rest stops.“Our primary concern is that the memo talks about giving states the ‘flexibility’ to toll existing interstates and ‘reconcile the grandfathered restrictions on the use of highway toll revenues with current law.’ We’re gearing up for a big fight over that,” Stephanie Kane, spokesperson for the Alliance for Toll-Free Interstates, told Fleet Owner.Related: ATRI: Fuel tax...
  • Where should I-66 outside the Beltway toll money go?

    01/02/2018 7:01:01 AM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 10 replies
    WTOP ^ | January 1, 2018 | Max Smith
    WASHINGTON — With construction on new toll lanes ramping up this year on Interstate 66 between Gainesville and the Beltway, Virginia’s Commonwealth Transportation Board is due to approve a number of projects next week that will be paid for by the toll lane operators. After a public hearing Thursday, the board is due to vote Jan. 10 on how to spend $496 million of a $579 million payment that Express Mobility Partners gave the state as part of the construction agreement. An additional $79 million is due to go toward oversight of the project, including public outreach, and there is...
  • Maryland plan to build toll lanes on Beltway, I-270 piques companies’ interest

    12/30/2017 1:05:09 AM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 21 replies
    The Washington Post ^ | December 13, 2017 | Katherine Shaver
    Maryland Transportation Secretary Pete K. Rahn dangled a $9 billion carrot Wednesday in front of more than 100 companies potentially interested in adding express toll lanes to the Capital Beltway, Interstate 270 and the Baltimore-Washington Parkway. “It’s amazing,” Rahn quipped to more than 320 highway engineers, designers and builders in a ballroom at the BWI Airport Marriott in Linthicum. “You can get a lot of attention when you put a nine in front of a ‘B.’” Officially, the Maryland Department of Transportation’s industry forum was intended to provide companies more details about the plan to add four toll lanes each...
  • $17 tolls? VDOT says 1st day on I-66 averaged $14.50 round trip

    12/29/2017 10:38:32 PM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 23 replies
    WTOP ^ | December 8, 2017 | Max Smith
    WASHINGTON — About two years ago, during the last big debate over Interstate 66 rush-hour tolls for solo drivers, there was a lot of talk about $17 round-trip tolls. Virginia’s transportation secretary said this week that the tolls drivers have seen inside the Beltway so far remain in line with those projections. New data the Virginia Department of Transportation provided Thursday from the first day of tolls on Monday morning show the average morning toll for drivers who paid with an E-ZPass, or who will get automated violation notices in the mail, was $10.70, while the average afternoon toll paid...
  • Minnesota voters to Franken: Don’t quit — let us fire you

    12/28/2017 5:40:06 PM PST · by Kaslin · 34 replies
    Hot ^ | December28, 2017 | ED MORRISSEY
    Luther Strange isn’t the only current US Senator on his way out the door. In a few days, Al Franken will submit his resignation as promised last week, and Tina Smith will take his seat at least until a special election in November chooses his successor. As it turns out, Minnesota voters aren’t entirely happy about Franken’s resignation — and half of them want Franken to renege on his pledge to resign, according to a new PPP poll: -50% of voters think he should not resign, to only 42% who think he should go through with his planned resignation. There...
  • Poll: Upside Down Frelinghuysen ‘Vulnerable’ in CD11 (NJ)

    12/25/2017 11:10:57 AM PST · by GuavaCheesePuff · 39 replies
    Insider NJ ^ | December 21, 2017 | Insider NJ
    In New Jersey’s 11th Congressional District, Republican incumbent U.S. Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen has an approval rating of 28%, and 54% disapprove of his job performance. according to a Public Policy Polling Memo. President Donald J. Trump has an approval rating of 40% and a disapproval rating of 56% in Frelinghuysen’s district. Speaker Paul Ryan is also unpopular with 26% of voters saying they approve of the job he is doing and a majority (63%) responding that they disapprove. These percentages, along with a hypothetical matchup between Frelinghuysen (40%) and a “Democratic opponent” (49%), indicate that Frelinghuysen is quite vulnerable in...
  • Next on Virginia’s extensive toll-road system: Interstate 395

    12/17/2017 1:15:37 AM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 16 replies
    The Washington Post ^ | November 25, 2017 | Luz Lazo
    T he expansion of Virginia’s extensive system of high­-occupancy toll (HOT) lanes is shifting to Interstate 395. Construction is set to take off before the end of the year along an eight-mile stretch of Interstate 395, where today’s high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes are being converted into toll lanes. The $480 million project will deliver the next major milestone in the state’s vision to create a network of more than 90 miles of HOT lanes in Northern Virginia by 2022. About 45 miles of express lanes have opened on Interstates 495 and 95 within the past five years, and the state...
  • Experts see few reasons to proceed with Interstate 81 tunnel option

    12/11/2017 4:43:18 AM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 31 replies
    The Syracuse Post-Standard ^ | December 8, 2017 | Mark Weiner
    A $2 million study on replacing part of Interstate 81 in Syracuse with a tunnel supports what national transportation experts say they have known for years: Tunnels usually are a bad idea.While an I-81 tunnel would be technically feasible, it would be difficult to justify the cost of up to $4.5 billion at a time when few publicly-financed tunnel projects are moving forward, according to four transportation policy experts interviewed by few highway tunnel projects approved in recent years have been expensive mega projects, often plagued by delays and cost overruns that have drawn public criticism, the experts said.New York...
  • Gilcrease Expressway extension update: How much will drivers pay for toll?

    12/03/2017 8:08:34 PM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 10 replies
    The Tulsa World ^ | November 13, 2017 | Kevin Canfield
    State officials have yet to find a private partner to help finance the construction of the final five miles of the Gilcrease Expressway, but they are closer to figuring out how much motorists will have to pay to use it. Tim Gatz, executive director of the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority, said Monday that the toll is expected to be about $1 to $1.50 for private vehicles, with a higher rate for commercial vehicles. Motorists who use the plate-pay system, as can be used in Jenks, likely would pay more. “We are waiting on the traffic and revenue study to come back...
  • State Asks About Benefits, Drawbacks of Privatizing I-270 Maintenance

    11/28/2017 5:12:35 AM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 1 replies
    Bethesda Magazine ^ | September 27, 2017 | Bethany Rodgers
    As state officials launch a project to add toll lanes to Interstate 270 and the Beltway, they also are exploring the benefits of privatizing maintenance of existing highway sections. The Maryland Department of Transportation last week began soliciting input from businesses on the estimated $7.6 billion plan to expand Interstate 495 through Maryland and I-270 from the Beltway to Frederick. A separate but related $1.4 billion plan calls for adding capacity to I-295. During a Sept. 21 press conference, Gov. Larry Hogan said his idea for relieving congestion on the state’s largest thoroughfares relies on finding a private partner to...
  • Montgomery Co. leaders hear state’s plans to ease Beltway, I-270 congestion

    11/27/2017 12:57:04 PM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 15 replies
    WTOP ^ | November 16, 2017 | Mike Murillo
    ROCKVILLE, Md. — A month after Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan introduced it, Maryland’s Secretary of Transportation Pete Rahn went in front of Montgomery County leaders to lay out a $9 billion project that aims to ease congestion on Interstate 270, the Capital Beltway and the Baltimore-Washington Parkway.Rahn believes construction of the project can begin in fewer than five years.“We have to recognize we have problem. It’s a multifaceted problem, and we have to come up with multifaceted solutions,” Rahn told members of the Montgomery County Council’s Transportation, Infrastructure, Energy, and Environment committee Thursday.Packed roads cost drivers time, as well. The...
  • Money for Arkansas River Bridge Is Fort Smith's Missing Link

    11/16/2017 4:54:55 AM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 17 replies
    Arkansas Business ^ | November 13, 2017 | Marty Cook
    One of Arkansas’ top priorities is finishing Interstate 49 in the western part of the state. A key component of that massive project, which is also massively expensive, is a 13.7-mile stretch near Fort Smith that includes a bridge over the Arkansas River to connect Interstate 40 with Interstate 49, which would then run from south Fort Smith to northwest Arkansas and up through the midsection of the nation. The project’s completion would connect with a 6.5-mile stretch of Interstate 549 that opened in 2015 and hooks up U.S. 71 with Highway 22 in south Fort Smith. The proposed 13.7-mile...
  • Hogan’s idea to widen Washington-area highways to add toll lanes has hit barriers before

    11/15/2017 10:34:02 AM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 10 replies
    The Washington Post ^ | October 21, 2017 | Katherine Shaver
    Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan’s proposal to add toll lanes to three of the most congested highways in the Washington suburbs reaches beyond similar proposals that stalled over the years after being deemed too expensive or disruptive to adjacent communities. Hogan’s $9 billion plan would add four toll lanes each to Maryland’s portion of the Capital Beltway (I-495) and to I-270 from the Beltway to Frederick. It would also widen the Baltimore-Washington Parkway by four toll lanes. The project would be built using a public-private partnership in what Hogan (R) has said would be the largest such deal for highways in...
  • MI to use P3 to cut $1B highway project schedule by 10 years

    10/22/2017 10:07:49 AM PDT · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 11 replies
    ConstructionDIVE ^ | October 2, 2017 | Kim Slowey
    Dive Brief: The Michigan Department of Transportation announced it will take on private-sector partners to finish a $1 billion state highway modernization project in Oakland County, MI. Using the public-private partnership (P3) model to design, build, finance and maintain the remainder of the project, rather than waiting on public funds to become available, could shorten the construction schedule by up to a decade, The Detroit News reported. MDOT will issue requests for qualifications from potential private partners before the end of the year, and it anticipates the selection process will wrap up in the summer and fall of 2018. The...
  • How to Make Private Investment in Infrastructure Really Work

    10/15/2017 10:58:14 PM PDT · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 2 replies
    Citylab ^ | October 9, 2017 | William Murray
    During the 2016 presidential campaign, Donald Trump—like his opponent Hillary Clinton—spoke glowingly about infrastructure spending, alluding to Franklin Roosevelt’s Works Progress Administration and Dwight Eisenhower’s Interstate Highway System as examples of how spending on roads, bridges and airports helped unite the country. For 2017, the American Society of Civil Engineers has given America’s infrastructure an overall grade of D+, estimating it would cost more than $4 trillion to upgrade properly. But President Trump’s $1 trillion dollar, 10-year infrastructure plan has so far moved along at a halting pace. This tortoise-like process may offer an opportunity to think more strategically about...
  • Texas' Toll Roads: A Big Step Towards Open Markets For Transportation

    10/10/2017 8:10:17 AM PDT · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 96 replies
    Forbes ^ | June 30, 2017 | Scott Beyer
    No city in America runs on anything resembling a free-market model. But Texas' major cities are probably the closest thing, with vast improvements to their economies and living standards to show for it. Their looser land-use laws mean that housing supply grows quickly, stabilizing prices. Their lighter tax and regulatory structure helps businesses locate there and grow. And—shenanigans from the governor's office notwithstanding—their openness to immigrants means they have cheap and robust labor forces.But one market-oriented aspect little discussed is Texas' approach to transportation. The state has 25 toll roads, more than any other state. They are particularly common in Houston and Dallas,...
  • New Texas 130 owners to make $60 million in repairs to bumpy road

    10/10/2017 5:46:43 AM PDT · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 18 replies
    The Austin American-Statesman ^ | September 20, 2017 | Ben Wear
    The southern, privately built section of Texas 130, which has been an obstacle course of bumps and cracks since shortly after its October 2012 opening, will see $60 million of pavement repairs over the next year in 35 spots between Mustang Ridge and Seguin. Crews in many cases will be removing five feet or more of the road’s “sub-base,” the treated and compacted soil layers that underlie the highway’s asphalt driving surface, replacing it with soil with different, stronger properties, and then repaving those rehabilitated sections. Some repairs will also include installation of impermeable layers of soil alongside the road...