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Early Reviews Of ICC Mixed

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The first segment of the ICC highway in Maryland opened for traffic Feb. 23.
David Schultz
The first segment of the ICC highway in Maryland opened for traffic Feb. 23.

A gas station on Georgia Avenue in north Silver Spring, a few hundred yards from the ICCs entrance, is now the de facto filling station for drivers just getting on or off the brand new toll road.

"It was a pleasant ride," Rudy Watson says. "And of course there's not much traffic on it now. But I got from Potomac over here in less than 25 minutes."

Watson lives just around the corner from here, and he says hell use the ICC regularly -- despite tolls that, at times, could climb above $6.

Not everyone shared Watsons enthusiasm, of course.

"I think its needed. It has been needed. It shouldve been built 30 years ago," says local resident Ralph Kirby. "[But] I'm sorry it's a toll road."

Kirby lives in Leisure World, a nearby retirement community. It's not the price of the tolls that bothers him, but that theyre being collected electronically through E-ZPass devices. If you get on the highway without one, you'll get hit with a $3 fine.

"I'm not going to pay an extra $3 each time I use it because I don't have an E-ZPass," Kirby says. "So, to heck with it!"

For now, though, anyone can ride the ICC. It's free for the first two weeks -- from now until March 7. After that, it'll cost you.

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