ICC Tolls Rates Approved: Will Be Among Highest In U.S. | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

: News

ICC Tolls Rates Approved: Will Be Among Highest In U.S.

Play associated audio

By Jonathan Wilson

Maryland's Intercounty connector roadway, an 18-mile stretch between Gaithersburg and Laurel, will have some of the highest tolls in the country when it opens in the Fall of 2010. Maryland's Transportation Authority approved the plan today.

Today's vote means two-axle vehicles, 95 percent of the vehicles expected to use roadway, will have to pay somewhere between 25 and 35 cents per mile on the ICC during morning and afternoon rush hours, and between 20 and 30 cents during off peak times. Exact rates will be set by the fall of 2010.

The authority's approval was unanimous and came in spite of three-fourths of the public comment collected saying the high tolls were too high.

Authority Executive Secretary Ronald Freeland says the public should hold off on judging the tolls. "I think we're premature to really make a statement that rates are too high to attract customers--motorists," says Freeland.

Freeland says toll rates will be re-evaluated, but stresses that it will take five to ten years of operation before the ICC ramps up to its projected usage.

Montgomery County Council President Nancy Floreen says the authority needs to consider providing discounts to regular users of the road. The authority said such local preference is unconstitutional, but Floreen says there are ways to make discounts work.

"So, okay, don't limit them to Montgomery County residents --I'm fine with that, but make them available, like they have in other parts of the state of Maryland," says Floreen.

The board did add a lower overnight rate: from 11 p.m to 5 a.m, rates could be as low as 10 cents a mile.

NPR

How Did The Son Of A Terrorist Chose Peace?

Zak Ebrahim is the son of terrorist El-Sayyid Nosair, one of the masterminds of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. He tells the story of being raised to hate and how he chose a very different path.
NPR

Around The World In 8 Hospital Meals

From tasty tempura to gross gruel, hospital meals across the globe vary wildly. Highbrow institutions in China and India have long served top-notch food. U.S. hospitals are starting to follow suit.
NPR

Congress Quietly Extends The Budget — Past Election Day, Anyway

Since the GOP retook the House, the chamber once brought the country to the brink of a debt default and once shut down the government. But in election years, including this one, there's no such drama.
NPR

Retailers' Customers Cautioned As Cyber Attacks Continue

Home Depot says some 56 million card holders were possibly compromised in a cyber attack. It says there's no evidence that debit PIN numbers were comprised or that the breach affected online shoppers.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.