May 3, 2023 - Transit

Richmond's toll roads will likely see a price hike soon

Illustration of a highway road sign made out of a giant hundred dollar bill.

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Richmond's toll roads are likely going to be more expensive starting Sept. 1.

Driving the news: The Richmond Metropolitan Transportation Authority, which oversees the metro area's toll roads, is facing a budget shortfall as toll road use has declined since the pandemic, the Times-Dispatch reports.

  • They're scheduled to vote next week on proposed increases for the three toll roads managed by RMTA, the first toll increases since 2008.

Of note: Under the proposed plan, tolls will be more expensive for people who use cash or coins over an E-ZPass, in part because machines that take nickels and dimes aren't made anymore, per the Times-Dispatch.

  • Around 74% of RMTA transactions were done via E-ZPass for the last fiscal year, according to the RMTA's toll report.

The proposed increases:

  • Powhite Parkway and Downtown Expressway main tolls: 70 cents ➡️ 90 cents (E-ZPass) ➡️ $1 (cash).
  • Entry/exit ramps for those: 20 cents ➡️ 45 cents (E-ZPass) ➡️ 50 cents (cash).
  • Boulevard Bridge (aka Nickel Bridge): 35 cents ➡️ 45 cents (E-ZPass) ➡️ 50 cents (cash).

What they're saying: "The toll increase is unavoidable," RMTA board chairman Marvin Tart Sr. told the Times-Dispatch.


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