No toll plazas, coin buckets or waiting in line
FRANKFORT, Ky. (April 16, 2013) – Members of the Kentucky Public Transportation Infrastructure Authority (KPTIA) on Tuesday were briefed on all-electronic tolling, the kind of state-of-the-art system Kentucky and Indiana plan for use in the Ohio River Bridges Project.
No toll plazas. No coin buckets. No stopping and waiting in line. Traffic flows freely, unimpeded, through tolling points.
Unlike the toll plazas and traffic lines that once defined all of Kentucky’s parkways and many of its bridges, all-electronic tolling is what the name implies: For drivers with transponders, tolls are automatically debited from a pre-paid account. Drivers without transponders are invoiced on the basis of license plate images captured by video cameras on overhead gantries. There is no cash collection option on the roadway.
“All-electronic tolling holds a number of benefits for the traveling public. There is greater safety because traffic keeps flowing at a sustained speed. And because there is less infrastructure, our capital and maintenance costs are lower,” said Kentucky Transportation Secretary, chairman of KPTIA.
The Ohio River Bridges Project involves construction of two new crossings, with approaches, to help alleviate the traffic congestion for which the Interstate 65 corridor through Louisville and Southern Indiana is known. One new crossing will carry northbound I-65 between Louisville and Jeffersonville, Ind., while the existing I-65 Kennedy Memorial Bridge will be converted to southbound traffic only. A second crossing will be built upstream between Prospect, Ky., and Utica, Ind., completing a loop around the area.
Tolls are needed to help construct and maintain the long-awaited project, and KPTIA will be issuing toll-revenue bonds to supply part of Kentucky’s portion of the project.
Kentucky and Indiana are seeking prospective vendors for construction and operation of a tolling system and collection of toll revenues.