By Kaitlyn Carr
The Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) announced Wednesday the proposed plans for the I-95 Express Toll Lanes (ETL), Maryland’s second all-electronic toll facility, and is seeking public comment on the proposal.
The I-95 Express spans about 10 miles between the Joppa Road overpass on I-95 and the Moravia Road exit on I-895. It is scheduled to open in late 2014, according to a release from the MDTA. Wednesday’s plan includes proposed mileage rate ranges that vary for peak, off-peak and overnight traffic. The proposal also sets the minimum and maximum per-mile toll rates for travel in the toll lanes.
The I-95 Improvement Project consists of two new ETL in each direction of I-95, adjacent to the existing four general-purpose (non-tolled) lanes, between I-895 and just north of MD Route 43. Like the Intercounty Connector, the ETL will use all-electronic toll collection with toll rates that vary by time of day.
The proposed mileage rate ranges for two-axle vehicles (passenger vehicles, motorcycles and light trucks) vary from $0.25 to $0.35 per-mile for proposed peak periods, $0.20 to $0.30 per-mile for off-peak periods and $0.10 to $0.30 per-mile for overnight periods.
The peak periods are as follows, according to the MDTA:
- Southbound: Monday-Friday 6-9 a.m.; Saturday noon-2 p.m.; Sunday 2-5 p.m.
- Northbound: Monday-Friday 3-7 p.m., Saturday noon-2 p.m.; Sunday 2-5 p.m.
The overnight period:
- Southbound and Northbound: 9 p.m. to 5 a.m. daily.
Off-Peak Periods: all other times
MDTA staff will be available to address questions at the public hearings. Those wishing to provide testimony to the MDTA Board are encouraged to attend. A hearing will be held at Perry Hall Middle School from 6-9 p.m. on Oct. 10.
There will also be hearings at Patterson High School in Baltimore on Oct. 7, and at Patterson Mill High School in Bel Air on Oct. 15.
Public comments will be accepted until 5 p.m. Nov. 4. The MDTA chairman and board members will take final action on the tolling plan on Dec. 12. Once the Board approves a tolling plan, the actual ETL toll rates will be set by the MDTA’s Executive Secretary.