[Editor: This is the text of a news release from the Louisville-Southern Indiana Ohio River Bridges Project.]
RIVERLINK WILL OPEN FOR BUSINESS NEXT WEEK
Customer service centers to open July 21
JEFFERSONVILLE, Ind. (July 14, 2016) — Even though tolling won’t begin until late this year, drivers will be able to set up RiverLink accounts, and two RiverLink customer service centers will open for business next week. The customer service centers are scheduled to open one week from today. Thursday, July 21 will also be the first day drivers can open their RiverLink accounts.
RiverLink is the new, all-electronic tolling system making the Louisville – Southern Indiana Ohio River Bridges Project possible. There are no toll booths, no coin machines, no lines and no stopping. Initial toll rates range from $2-$12. The lowest toll rates are for drivers with transponders. Drivers must set up a prepaid account to get a transponder.
“We’ve spent the past several months making sure drivers have the information they need to prepare for the start of tolling later this year,” said Megan McLain, innovative finance manager with the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet. “More than any other question, people have asked when they can set up their accounts. We have a date they can circle on their calendars. Customers can open their accounts and RiverLink customer service centers will open on July 21.”
The customer service centers are located at 400 East Main Street in Louisville and 103 Quartermaster Court in Jeffersonville. The centers will be open 7 a.m.-7 p.m. Monday – Friday. They will also be open 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. Saturday during the first year of operations.
“We still have several months before the start of tolling,” said Clint Murphy, director of tolling oversight with the Indiana Department of Transportation. “Setting up a prepaid account is an important first step we know many drivers are ready to take. We want to make the process as easy as possible, and make sure drivers have the information they need to pay the lowest rates.”
Setting Up a RiverLink Account
To open an account, a driver will need to know a vehicle’s make, model, year, color and license plate number. A nickname can be chosen to help easily identify each vehicle.
There are two types of RiverLink accounts – personal accounts and commercial accounts.
A personal account can include up to four vehicles, with a minimum balance of $20 to open the account. A commercial account is for a minimum of five vehicles, with no maximum. The minimum balance to open a commercial account is $20 per vehicle.
Drivers can open a personal account online at the RiverLink.com secure website, by phone with a customer service representative (855-RIV-LINK) or in person at one of two RiverLink customer service centers. Drivers can use a credit card, debit card or checking account to open an account. The customer service centers also accept cash.
To set up a commercial account, businesses are encouraged to call 855-RIV-LINK and will be connected with a specialized customer service representative. Businesses that choose to visit a customer service center should bring an easy-to-read sheet with all vehicle information.
Calling a customer service representative is expected to be the fastest and easiest way for a business to open an account. Because of the specialized care, commercial accounts initially can’t be opened online.
There are two types of RiverLink transponders – RiverLink local transponders and RiverLink E-ZPass transponders. A sensor reads the transponder and the appropriate toll is deducted from a prepaid account. If you set up your account online or by phone, your transponder will be mailed to you, free of charge.
A RiverLink local transponder is free of charge, one per registered vehicle. The small sticker adheres to the windshield, is non-transferable and will work only on the local tolled bridges. Drivers choosing a RiverLink local transponder will receive it when setting up their account, either in person or in the mail.
A RiverLink E-ZPass transponder is $15 per transponder. It’s mounted to the windshield, is portable from vehicle to vehicle registered to a single account and works in all 16 E-ZPass states (https://e-zpassiag.com/about-e-zpass/where-can-i-use-it). Drivers choosing a RiverLink E-ZPass transponder will receive it later this year, before the start of tolling.
A driver can choose to open a prepaid account, but not get a transponder. In this case, a driver has a registered plate. A camera captures and recognizes the license plate and the appropriate toll is deducted from the prepaid account. Rates are $1 more per crossing because of higher administrative costs.
Only individuals and businesses wanting transponders will be able to set up their accounts when operations begin. Drivers will be able to set up an account with a registered plate later this year.
No Prepaid Account
If a driver chooses not to set up a prepaid account, the license plate will be photographed on each crossing, and an invoice will be sent in the mail to the registered owner. Drivers without a prepaid account – no transponder and no registered plate — will pay the highest toll rates because of higher administrative costs.
Specialty transponders, including transponders for motorcycles and transponders to mount on license plates, will be available later this year. Some low-emissivity (low-e) windshields, a type of energy-efficient glass, require a transponder mounted on the license plate.
Start of Tolling
Tolling will begin when cross-river capacity is added to the system. That means either the improved John F. Kennedy Memorial Bridge or the new East End bridge will be complete and fully open to traffic. Both are expected to happen late this year.
The new Abraham Lincoln Bridge, the improved Kennedy Bridge and the new East End bridge will be tolled. The Sherman Minton Bridge and the Clark Memorial Bridge will not be tolled. Fine more information at www.riverlink.com.
[Editor’s Note: Kapsch TrafficCom, is the RiverLink toll system provider for the Ohio River Bridges Project.]
The Louisville – Southern Indiana Ohio River Bridges Project includes two new bridges and their approaches, an improved Kennedy Bridge and reconstruction of the Kennedy Interchange, where I-65, I-64 and I-71 come together in downtown Louisville. The new Abraham Lincoln Bridge will carry six lanes of I-65 northbound traffic. The improved Kennedy Bridge will carry six lanes of southbound traffic. The new East End bridge will connect the Gene Snyder Freeway in Prospect, Kentucky with State Road 265 (Lee Hamilton Highway) in Utica, Indiana. Find all of the latest traffic information and more details on the Ohio River Bridges Project at www.kyinbridges.com.
Mindy Peterson, RiverLink spokesperson