Tuesday 14 December 2010

North Texas goes fully electronic freeflow

The roads are:
* Addison Airport Toll Tunnel
* Dallas North Tollway
* Lewisville Lake Toll Bridge
* Mountain Creek Lake Bridge
* President George Bush Turnpike
* Sam Rayburn Tollway in Collin, Dallas and Denton Counties

This obviously creates benefits for motorists in reduced congestion, and sees the conversion of the scheme to full DSRC and ANPR technology.  DSRC customers have prepaid accounts and use a specific set of Transcore tags.  ANPR users are charged at 50% higher than DSRC rates.

Good on the NTTA.   Assuming the relevant systems are in place to allow efficient and effective ANPR charging and enforcement, electronic free flow tolling should be on the agenda for all tolling agencies worldwide.  It has been proven now for well over a decade in Canada and Australia, and one of the biggest criticisms of tolling are the queues resulting from manual toll booths.  Indeed the Dartford Crossing near London has this as one of its biggest problems, as a section of highway that already lacks capacity becomes an almost daily hours long bottleneck due to manual tolls.

Questions can be raised about interoperability, about the DSRC technology used and whether it is suitable for longer term goals for ITS and pricing, but that is for another article.  The key point is that electronic free flow tolling is what should be expected nowadays.

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