Parkland Press

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Toll increase approved

Wednesday, July 11, 2018 by The Press in News Briefs

pa turnpike

The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission has approved a six percent toll increase for 2019 both for E-ZPass and cash customers; the increase is set to start 12:01 a.m. Jan. 6, 2019.

The toll increase will apply to all PA Turnpike sections and extensions, including the westbound Delaware River Bridge cashless tolling point (#359) in Bucks County, where tolls have not changed since January 2016.

The most-common toll for a passenger vehicle will increase next year from $1.30 to $1.38 for E-ZPass customers and from $2.10 to $2.25 for cash customers. The cashless toll at the westbound Delaware River Bridge will increase from $5 to $5.30 for E-ZPass customers and from $6.75 to $7.20 for those who use PA Turnpike TOLL-BY-PLATE. The most common toll for a Class-5 tractor-trailer truck will increase from $3.45 to $3.66 for E-ZPass and from $15.35 to $16.30 for cash. (Note, truckers in this class who use E-ZPass tend to take shorter trips than those who pay with cash or PA Turnpike TOLL-BY-PLATE).

The 2019 toll increase – like previous annual toll increases – is required to meet the PTC’s funding obligations as well as maintaining and improving the 552-mile PA Turnpike system.

“Since 2009, the PTC has increased tolls annually to make good on a funding obligation required by a 2007 state law known as Act 44,” PA Turnpike CEO Mark Compton said. “Under that law, the commission has delivered $6.1 billion in toll-backed funding to PennDOT [The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation] in the last 11 years.”

Compton said the increase will also support efforts to manage the asset the PTC was assigned to build, operate and maintain in the mid 1930s – the PA Turnpike.

“Parts of our tollway will soon turn 78 years old, and we owe it to toll-paying customers to continue to invest in our road to make it safer, smoother and wider,” Compton said. “This year, about 84 percent of our $552 million capital budget is focused on renewing, rebuilding and widening our highway system which last year carried more than 200 million vehicles.”

The PTC has thus far reconstructed more than 132 miles of its system, with another 19 miles of roadway now being rebuilt and widened and more than 82 miles currently in planning and design phases. The PTC does not receive tax appropriations to operate and maintain its roadway.

The commission will post a 2019 trip calculator and toll schedule online later this summer. Visit https://www.paturnpike.com/toll/tollmileage.aspx for more information.