A survey in British Columbia, Canada, has found that support for tolling to fund construction of new bridges in the Vancouver area varied depending on where people lived. Those in the area who would use the bridges most often were least likely to support the idea.
The Colorado Department of Transportation is considering expanding 18 miles of Interstate 25 between Castle Rock and Monument to eight lanes and installing various configurations of high-occupancy toll lanes. The four-lane section of road experiences heavy congestion, and officials expect the area's population will increase.
The Illinois State Toll Highway Authority is inviting the public to pick up wildflower seeds and tree seedlings on Arbor Day, which is Friday. The agency wants to "encourage the public to join our ongoing effort to provide habitat and support our region's vital ecosystem," says Executive Director Greg Bedalov, and will provide 7,500 seed packets and 7,500 seedlings.
Construction of the world's longest floating bridge wrapped up a year ago, and the Washington State Department of Transportation said vehicles have taken 30 million trips across the tolled span on State Route 520 since then. The next phase of the project should start in 2018.
Democratic state Rep. Brian Murray in Massachusetts notes that commuters from west of Boston pay more in tolls than do those coming from the north and south, and he has introduced legislation to add tolls to routes 3 and 128 and Interstate 93. This editorial, which notes that the state pays more than four times the national average on road maintenance, argues that the state should learn to spend more efficiently before adding new tolls.
The Massachusetts Turnpike switched to all-electronic tolling last year, and the state's Department of Transportation has been charging motorists with or without E-ZPass transponders the same rate. That will end May 8, when people who get the bill via mail will pay a higher rate.
Sherwood Construction has been awarded a $27.1 million contract by the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority to expand part of the turnpike to six lanes, and work will begin in August. The expansion is part of a $935 million project that is being funded through increased tolls.
A group in Alaska called Girdwood 2020 wants to use a sales or fuel tax or tolls to fund patrolling of the Seward Highway by the Anchorage Police Department. The state troopers' budget has been cut by more than $10 million over two years.
Washington state's Legislature has approved a plan to transfer $5 million in gas-tax revenue to the Tacoma Narrows bridge to keep toll rates from being increased until mid-2019. The cost to maintain the bridge and pay back debt is more than what it collects in tolls.
Auburn, Maine, City Manager Peter Crichton released a proposed budget this week that includes property tax increases that would help fund education, as well as health insurance, social services and raises for city workers. City Councilor James Pross called the budget responsible, noting that the city is losing some state funding.