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Keyword: tollroads

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  • Unify control over Metro Orlando's expressways

    12/05/2017 7:14:05 PM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 2 replies
    The Orlando Sentinel ^ | December 1, 2017 | Orlando Sentinel Editorial Board
    Florida lawmakers demonstrated wisdom, foresight and fiscal responsibility in 2014 when they combined county expressway authorities in Central Florida into a single, regional agency. Roads don’t stop at county lines, and it’s inefficient and expensive to maintain multiple bureaucracies to control separate stretches of pavement. It’s also a problem when neighboring toll-road agencies have conflicting policies and plans for the future. Yet the rationale behind that 2014 law hasn’t been completely realized yet. It’s time for lawmakers to step in again. Dueling road agencies The Central Florida Expressway Authority now owns and operates 118 miles of toll roads in Metro...
  • Wear: Explaining TxDOT’s sudden retreat on toll roads

    12/04/2017 7:11:42 PM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 27 replies
    The Austin American-Statesman ^ | November 26, 2017 | Ben Wear
    People forgot the asterisk. Or maybe they never noticed it in the first place. The consequences of that oversight took full form about a week ago, and the result is that the prospects for several major highway projects in Central Texas and the state’s other urban centers are now uncertain. Back during the 2013 legislative session, when Texas Department of Transportation officials and their lawmaker allies began pushing for more money through a constitutional amendment, they said that TxDOT needed an extra $5 billion a year to fight traffic congestion. Just give us that much money and all will be...
  • Drivers see I-66 tolls fluctuate frantically, top out at $34.50

    12/04/2017 9:20:02 AM PST · by Hojczyk · 49 replies
    WTOP ^ | December 4,2017 | Reem Nadeem
    WASHINGTON — Drivers on eastbound Interstate 66 saw tolls fluctuate frantically and top out at almost $35 during the Monday morning commute, the first with dynamic tolling on the highway. Rush-hour tolling began at 5:30 a.m. and early morning drivers saw tolls at around $3.50. Within an hour, the tolls had risen to $10 and eventually reached $34.50 at the height of rush-hour. By 9 a.m., prices were back down to below $10, said WTOP’s traffic reporter Dave Dildine, who spent the morning driving on I-66 to report the latest conditions. “It’s going to take some time for us to...
  • U.S. 183, I-35 projects waver after Abbott, Patrick trash tolls

    12/04/2017 1:13:32 AM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 8 replies
    The Austin American-Statesman ^ | November 20, 2017 | Ben Wear
    Several key Central Texas highway projects — including expansions of U.S. 183 in North Austin, U.S. 290 in Southwest Austin and Interstate 35 through the heart of the area — are once again in limbo after Gov. Greg Abbott and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick last week staked out firm anti-toll positions. “Right now there’s a billion dollars worth of projects on hold, between 183 and Oak Hill,” said Mike Heiligenstein, executive director of the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority. The I-35 project, estimated to cost $8 billion to add toll lanes and other improvements from Round Rock to Buda, was...
  • Texans driven mad as tolls burn holes in their wallets

    12/04/2017 12:19:08 AM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 70 replies
    The Texas Tribune ^ | November 17, 2017 | Alex Samuels
    Angela Dean spends at least $200 a month to cover after-school care for her 5-year-old son. Getting back and forth to work — and making sure she picks him up in time — costs another $200 just in tolls.“If I didn't take toll roads, my commute would be an hour-and-a-half or more depending on traffic,” Dean said. “I get off work at 5:30 p.m. and I have to pick my son up by 6:30 or pay crazy late fees. When I take the toll roads, I get there with about 15 minutes to spare.”The North Texas suburbanite uses the President...
  • Florida lost more than $45 million after tolls suspended during Hurricane Irma.

    10/10/2017 12:32:42 PM PDT · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 35 replies
    The Orlando Weekly ^ | September 23, 2017 | Jim Turner, the News Service of Florida
    More than $45 million in revenue is believed to have been lost when the state suspended highway toll collections to help speed evacuations and relief efforts for Hurricane Irma, Florida's Turnpike system estimates. However, the estimated $3 million-a-day impact is not expected to hinder operations of the system or ongoing work programs, “as impacts such as toll suspensions due to a hurricane are taken into consideration during the annual budgeting process,” turnpike spokesman Chad Huff said in an email Friday. Funding 404 full-time positions, the turnpike system is budgeted at $1.57 billion for the current fiscal year, which began July...
  • 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,...
  • Transportation Funding: Why It’s Still Toll Roads Versus Public Transit

    09/21/2017 11:08:05 PM PDT · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 7 replies
    EfficientGov ^ | September 20, 2017 | Andrea Fox
    Is fighting sprawl still a goal for those who decide the fate of transportation funding at the federal, state and local levels?Transportation planning is deeply connected to economic development, but there in any agreement about transportation funding among government leaders often ends.Parag Khanna, a senior public policy analyst in Singapore and author of “Connectography: Mapping the Future of Global Civilization,” summarized the political divide over transportation planning like this: “America is increasingly divided not between red states and blue states, but between connected hubs and disconnected backwaters.”But division that stymies transportation planning goes further. Government leaders have always been divided...
  • Fla. continues toll-road suspensions as Irma evacuees return

    09/14/2017 2:13:37 PM PDT · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 8 replies
    Equipment World's Better Roads ^ | September 13, 2017 | Don McLoud
    All road-toll collections in Florida remain suspended following Hurricane Irma, as evacuees make their way home.Gov. Rick Scott directed the Florida Department of Transportation to suspend the tolls ahead of the storm so residents could access hurricane supplies and evacuate faster. Now, the same measure is being implemented to allow for safe return. The governor reported that all interstates and turnpikes were opened as of Monday afternoon.However, the governor is also cautioning residents to check with local authorities before returning, to make sure their communities and homes are safe to re-enter.The FDOT reports heavy traffic on eastbound Interstate 10 and...
  • Are Toll Roads The Way Forward For Nevada?

    06/05/2017 6:48:49 AM PDT · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 35 replies
    Nevada Public Radio ^ | May 24, 2017 | Casey Morell
    Solving traffic issues across our state is an age-old problem.Southern Nevada faces gridlock as the area continues to expand. Northern Nevada's geography makes road construction and rehab trickier.But the appetite for taxes, which help build our roads, is weak. One potential solution? Toll roads.Tom Skancke is a lobbyist and transportation expert who thinks toll roads could be a great way for Nevada to help improve its infrastructure."What I'm suggesting is that more states around the country and particularly in the West -- in the Intermountain West -- have a serious conversation about more toll lanes," he said.Skancke said one of...
  • Biggest Transportation Battles of 2016 to Continue in the New Year (Texas)

    01/02/2017 8:15:33 PM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 15 replies
    The Texas Tribune ^ | December 27, 2016 | Brandon Formby
    The cost of toll roads, the toll of urban congestion, ride-hailing battles and a high-speed train war garnered plenty of attention in Texas this year. And after the Legislature spent two sessions focusing on highway funding, lawmakers now appear poised to tackle other transportation matters next year. Here's a look at the year's biggest transportation stories and how they may continue to unfold in the coming months:1. Uber and Lyft roll out of Austin after losing city electionNational ride-hailing companies Uber and Lyft stopped operating in Austin after voters there rejected an ordinance that would have repealed certain regulations, including...
  • What China’s ‘Highway Robbery’-Style Toll Roads Say About its Economy

    11/20/2016 11:02:14 PM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 19 replies
    Epoch Times ^ | October 30, 2016 | Cai Shenkun
    Why is China’s huge toll road system running massive losses despite billions of income from toll fees? It’s another strategy devised by the communist regime to siphon wealth from the public, says Cai Shenkun, a well-known Chinese economist and blogger.The Chinese state operates the largest toll road system in the world. Toll roads across the country collect more than 400 billion yuan (US$60 billion) each year. But strangely, this profitable monopoly industry reports huge losses year after year. According to recently released data by China’s Ministry of Transportation, revenue from toll roads was 409.78 billion yuan in 2015 while operating...
  • Are Texans paying twice for toll roads?

    11/10/2016 8:07:35 PM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 13 replies
    Click 2 Houston ^ | November 7-9, 2016 | Joel Eisenbaum
    HARRIS COUNTY, Texas - The Harris County Toll Road Authority collected about $760 million in tolls the last fiscal year, yet it is improbable that any Harris County toll road will ever be “paid off,” Channel 2 Investigates has learned.   “Not with system financing, which allows us to borrow money at a favorable rate to build new projects,” said Patti Evans, the authority’s assistant director of communications.In other words, tolls collected today are not only used to pay down system-wide debt, but to construct more toll roads in the future.    “I think it is important to say —...
  • Infrastructure investors go big

    11/06/2016 8:16:17 AM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 3 replies
    Pensions & Investments ^ | October 31, 2016 | Arleen Jacobius
    Pension funds and other asset owners increasingly are investing in U.S. infrastructure, often buying the assets from infrastructure money managers. This could be a win-win. Investor interest comes at a time when the first crop of infrastructure funds raised in the U.S. in 2004 and 2005 are coming to the end of their 10-year life span. Managers are expected to bring more transactions to market to take advantage of growing interest by direct investors. Industry insiders expect more infrastructure core projects to change to institutional investor ownership. Investors prize the core projects, even though returns generally are lower than investments...
  • Constitutional Use of Toll Revenue the Subject of Recent Federal Court Decision

    09/10/2016 8:01:28 PM PDT · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 20 replies
    Lexology ^ | September 8, 2016 | Nossaman LLP - Fredric W. Kessler and Shant Boyajian
    Public agencies with toll-setting authority should take note of a recent federal court decision relating to the uses of user fees and toll revenue, as well as the stated goals of the plaintiff in that case.The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York recently clarified the constitutional uses of toll revenue in American Trucking Associations v. New York State Thruway Authority, 13 Civ. 8123 (CM) (S.D.N.Y. Aug. 10, 2016). In this case, commercial trucking companies and the American Trucking Associations (ATA) claimed that the New York State Thruway Authority violated the Constitution by charging inflated toll rates...
  • Toll roads in Austin, Texas are discriminatory

    08/17/2016 5:02:55 AM PDT · by MeneMeneTekelUpharsin · 109 replies
    Office conversation | 17 August 2016 | Mene Mene Tekel Upharsin
    People at work were talking about getting to work and back home the other day. In the conversation, they mentioned the toll roads in Austin, Texas and the cost thereof. I was in shock. The amount per month spent on toll roads for people ranged from $300-600 per MONTH. Then it hit me! The poor can not afford to pay those charges. So, the regular roads in Austin are in bumper-to-bumper traffic overload. The well-to-do go to and fro with great convenience while the lower classes suffer pretty badly with some having a 2-hour trip EACH WAY from home to...
  • Official: Paying Off Texas Toll Roads Debt Would Cost $38B

    05/24/2016 10:02:41 PM PDT · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 31 replies
    Construction Equipment Guide ^ | April 29, 2016 | Associated Press
    AUSTIN, Texas (AP) A Texas Department of Transportation official said the state would need $38 billion to pay off debt linked to dozens of toll roads and make the highways free to drivers. Executive director James Bass updated a Texas House panel in Austin. The 2015 Legislature ordered TxDOT to report on the status of Texas toll roads. A final report is due in September.
  • Confusing ramps lead Fort Worth drivers onto toll lanes

    03/28/2016 9:50:07 PM PDT · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 12 replies
    The Washington Times ^ | March 27, 2016 | Gordon Dickson (AP)
    HALTOM CITY, Texas (AP) - Shon Newsome almost got tricked into paying a toll for a third time. But on a recent afternoon, just before she was about to drive onto a Loop 820 on-ramp that would have required her to pay a toll, the sales executive pulled off the highway in Haltom City and asked a bystander for directions. She was trying to figure out which lane on the two-lane ramp would take her to the toll-free lanes - but the answer wasn’t clear.
  • Florida Attorney General investigating rental car companies for fees added to toll charges

    02/21/2016 5:11:34 PM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 20 replies
    WPTV ^ | February 19, 2016 | Jenn Strathman
    WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - Take a drive on Florida's toll road. It's not how far you go that determines what you pay. We found it may be the car you drive. "I was mad going on vacation with my wife," explained Steve Pasek. For Pasek, the memories of his Florida vacation are as fresh as the snow back in Ohio. He declined the rental car company's toll service. With the rental car company's automated billing services, you are billed weeks after you return the car. A third party company is used to send you the bill. While Pasek declined...
  • Rental car toll fees stir backlash that threatens Florida’s image

    12/16/2015 11:08:36 AM PST · by Tolerance Sucks Rocks · 55 replies
    The Miami Herald ^ | October 29, 2015 | Steve Bousquet
    TALLAHASSEE Visitors to Florida who rent cars are being shocked by toll charges long after they get home, and enough are complaining that legislators say it could damage the state’s tourist-friendly image. In Florida, a tourist climbs behind the wheel of a rental car and enters a world of 600 miles of toll roads, more than any other state. As cash toll booths are steadily giving way to cashless, all-electronic tolling, car renters are being hit with service fees of $4 to $15 a day on top of unpaid toll charges. The rental car industry calls it a convenience as...