Tom Warne Report, 15 June 2012
Drivers in southern California will have the opportunity to buy a faster commute as part of a $210 million, federally funded pilot program Caltrans is planning for later this year. The agency’s “Metro ExpressLanes” will switch 11 miles of existing carpool lanes on the 110 Freeway and 14 miles on the I-10 San Bernardino Freeway to toll lanes for one year.
Solo drivers can pay $40 and $50 to have a transponder installed in their car to allow them to pay a fee to use the lanes, under requirements by the Los Angeles County Congestion Reduction Demonstration Program. Cars will two or more people will still need the transponder installed to inform the system of how many occupants are in the vehicle, but they will not have to pay.
Suggested prices range from $0.25 per mile to a maximum of $1.40 per mile. The tolls will debut on the 110 Freeway this November, followed by the 10 Freeway early in 2013. Caltrans spokesperson Judy Gish said tolls will vary according to traffic levels in the carpool lanes.