WSDOT presented their plans to convert all HOV lanes on the freeways in Washington to HOT (toll) lanes beginning with I-5 and I-405 from Puyallup to Marysville and the I-5 Express Lanes. See map for impacts on Puget Sound.
What does this mean?
See below for some of the details, but in short: The tolls are a HUGE LIE.
Please do this:
1. Click HERE to sign the petition to demand they eliminate all toll lanes. (then unsubscribe to all the petitions except this one so you don’t get spammed)
2. Call 1-800-562-6000 and follow the instructions to leave a message for your legislators demanding they sponsor and vote to eliminate the toll lanes.
3. Share this with all your friends and neighbors and encourage them to do the same. Only when we get their attention with overwhelming resistance will the stop. Also like our Facebook Page.
Some impacts of expanding the toll lanes:
– No new general purpose lanes will be added, only toll lanes. Yet we have already paid for these lanes. The new lane already being constructed on I-405 from Bellevue to SR167 will be approved for tolling by the legislature this winter if we don’t stop them.
– Anyone using the toll lanes will need to buy a FlexPass and set up an account with $30 before they can carpool for free.
– Drivers must buy a GoodToGo Pass and set up an account with $30 or pay an additional $2 every time they use the toll lanes.
– 2-Person carpools (95% of all vehicles in the HOV lanes) will no longer be allowed without paying the toll. This takes away all incentive to carpool and those carpools will be replaced with solo drivers, which has already been proven in the tolls on I-405 where carpooling has all but vanished adding even more cars on the roads.
– Collisions will increase. Collisions increased by 55% when the toll lanes were implemented on I-405 and this matches results nation-wide. Collisions also increased on surface streets due to traffic diverting to avoid the freeway.
– Unlike the gas tax, toll revenue is not protected by the 18th amendment to be used only for roads. This money can be used for any purpose from transit to education.
– The toll lane experiment on I-405 already proved that they do not improve congestion. This congestion leads to increased emissions.
– About 40% of all toll revenue collected is lost to overhead and paying the private tolling company based in Texas, leaving only 60% of the revenue available for road maintenance. (For comparison, the gas tax costs less than 1% to collect directly from the oil refineries with no bills or billing errors to drivers.)
Please Click HERE to sign the petition and Call 1-800-562-6000 to leave a message for the legislators that are supposed to represent you in Olympia. Then share this!
If we don’t stop them now, our FREEways will become FEEways.
David, I posted my displeasure for these toll lanes. They want to force autonomous cars to have the right of way to encourage all usage of gas driving cars.
I say do it, why wait until 2040 do it now as a straight conversion of HOV to HOT and open prior to completion of the 2nd half of the I-405 ETL. With this I-5 should turn into an unprecedented nightmare for all the reasons you state above and WBSDOT cant hide behind added capacity in claiming tolling success. It would be a fabulous thing to see WBSDOT and Unsound Transit pushed into a corner that they can not slither out of and bring an end to this tolling scheme as soon as possible.
On the other side of the coin. If HOT lanes do truly manage and improve traffic under what I can only fathom as the Marry Poppins principal, (pure magic), I will be proven wrong and will happily admit to having a complete lack of traffic engineering understanding.
Well said, Kevin. Well said.
I have been telling everyone the ETLs are just a place holder for the wave of autonomous cars that are coming which will supplant all but buses from using them…And my prediction was within 10 years. Looks like I am not too far off, I don’t think it will take till 2040. Autonomy + ST3 will have the real impact on our flow….The tolls are there to punish solo drivers, 2+ just get caught in the middle. We only don’t have 520 and 90 tolls because of the road width and ST3…the entire region will get them.. I am not a payer of the tolls, but am embracing the 2040 future where I might be able to hop a train or sleep in an autonomous car on my way home from imbibing downtown… I will be old and cranky by that time and have zero desire to sit in traffic with people who still want cars…