New toll system for Dulles Toll Road - first steps
By Peter Samuel
Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority (MWAA), operator of the Dulles Toll Road in Northern Virginia is makes preparatory steps to lay out requirements in a new toll system. They say they are looking at distance based tolls and peak/off-peak toll rates.
Rob Yingling a spokesman says: "We are preparing a new toll rate proposal which will be reviewed by our Board before beginning a public process or considering toll equipment requirements. We are looking at concepts such as distance-based tolling and peak period pricing possibly in the future."
The 14 mile, 23km tollroad goes west from the Capital Beltway I-495 at Tysons Corner to VA-28 at the entry to Dulles Airport in Fairfax County and continues as the Macquarie held private Dulles Greenway into Loudoun County and Leesburg. Most trips on the Dulles Toll Road currently involve two tolls - one at a mainline plaza near Tysons Corner and another ramp toll to the west.
The mainline plaza has two near-open road lanes on the left side and five cash lanes each direction. Ramps are mostly two lanes.
The present toll system goes back about ten years.
Toll rates are being aggressively increased to help finance a rail line being built in the corridor, so there will be pressure on MWAA to upgrade the toll system to make it fairer, and to reduce operating costs and delays to motorists.
It is quite likely they'll eliminate cash and go all-electronic in a new system.
CDM Smith is the major tolls consultant to MWAA.
The Toll Road has four travel lanes each direction. In its median is the untolled 2x2 laned Dulles Airport Access Road ramped to allow only trips to and from the Airport. In turn in the median of the access road a metro rail line is under construction.