Second round of public meetings for I-405 express toll lane rate proposal, Feb. 17 and 19
Transportation Commission Office - PO Box 47308 - Olympia, WA 98504-7308
Date: February 11, 2015
Contact: Reema Griffith, Transportation Commission Executive Director, 360-705-7070
OLYMPIA – People interested in commenting on the Washington State Transportation Commission’s toll rate proposal for the Interstate 405 express toll lanes will have two more opportunities next week. The express toll lanes will open later this year on the north end of I-405 between Bellevue and Lynwood.
Details on the two public meetings next week are provided below:
- 6 – 8 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 17, Online virtual public meeting: A presentation will be made on the rate proposal and project, and then commissioners will answer questions and take comments through a moderated online chat format. Details are provided on the WSTC website on how to participate in this meeting.
- 6:30 – 8 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 19, Kirkland City Hall, 123 Fifth Ave., Kirkland: Public comment will be taken on the rate proposal, but no action by the commission is planned. There will be an open house at the same location from 5:30 – 6:30 p.m. where people can learn more about the I-405 express toll lanes project.
The WSTC will hold a final meeting from 6:30 – 8 p.m., Wednesday, March 18, at Kirkland City Hall, 123 Fifth Ave., Kirkland. The WSTC will take public comment at this meeting and is expected to take action to adopt the final rates and policies. There will be an open house at the same location from 5:30 – 6:30 p.m. where people can learn more about the I-405 express toll lanes project.
Highlights of the commission’s toll rate proposal for the I-405 express toll lanes include:
- Good To Go! toll rates will range from a minimum of 75 cents to a maximum of $10 – it is estimated that the typical toll will range from 75 cents to $4.
- Carpools with three or more people will be exempt from paying a toll at all times, and carpools with two people will be exempt, except during weekday peak hours (5 – 9 a.m. and 3 – 7 p.m.). Motorcycles, transit vehicles, and vanpools will also be exempt.
- To use the express toll lanes free, drivers must meet the occupancy requirements, have a Good To Go! account and have a Flex Pass, which will be offered by the Washington State Department of Transportation starting in spring 2015.
- Drivers without a Good To Go! account can also use the express toll lanes and will receive a bill in the mail for their trip. Drivers who chose this option will pay $2 above the posted Good To Go! rate in effect at the time of the trip. This additional amount is necessary to cover the cost of collecting Pay By Mail toll bills.
Other ways people can comment on the proposal until the March 18 hearing:
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org. Please indicate “405 ETL” in the subject line.
Website: Submit comments utilizing the online comment form on the commission’s website, under “contact us”: http://wstc.wa.gov/ContactUs/feedback.htm
Online Discussion Forums: People can join the Voice of Washington State (VOWS) input program and post ideas and comments utilizing the commission’s online discussion forums. Persons will be able to see all the comments submitted and can vote on them.
Washington State Transportation Commission
P.O. Box 47308
Olympia, WA 98504-7308
I-405 express toll lanes let drivers choose to travel faster by paying a toll to access the HOV lanes. Toll rates will adjust depending on traffic, and drivers will pay the rate they see upon entering the lanes. Tolls can be paid with the current Good To Go! pass or by mail at a higher rate. To use express toll lanes free, carpool drivers will need the new Good To Go! Flex Pass, set to HOV mode.
The WSTC is legally required to set the toll rate range for the I-405 express toll lanes in an amount that is sufficient to pay for maintenance and operation of the lanes. By law, toll revenue can only be used to pay for the cost of the I-405 express toll lanes maintenance and operations, as well as future I-405 corridor improvements. The rate setting process began with recommendations from the I-405/SR 167 Executive Advisory Group in November 2013. Rate setting is also informed by WSDOT analysis and recommendations, as well as public input.
Hyperlinks within the release:http://www.voiceofwashingtonstate.org/