WOODBRIDGE, Va. — Using the 95 Express Lanes in Virginia could cost drivers a lot more this holiday weekend or be completely free, depending on how and when motorists travel the lanes.
Transurban, which operates the lanes, expects increased volume Thursday and Friday afternoons from noon to 6 p.m. Last year, it says express lane delays were worse on Friday.
With the increased volume, drivers using those lanes should expect to see higher-than-average tolls. The lane operator suggested avoiding those peak times to see the greatest benefit of the toll lanes.
Transurban said it will also help drivers by letting them know if, and when, there is congestion in the toll lanes — giving drivers adequate time to get out of the express lanes to avoid a large toll just for sitting in traffic.
The reversal schedule will be adjusted as well to help drivers.
Thursday and Friday lane reversals begin an hour earlier, with lanes turning southbound at 10 a.m. The lanes will close around 7:30 a.m. Sunday for the Rolling Thunder event and reopen to northbound traffic at 11 a.m.
The lanes will stay northbound all day Memorial Day and will not return southbound until its regularly scheduled turnaround Tuesday, beginning the process around 11 a.m.
Transurban said more than 171,000 drivers used the toll lanes during last year’s Memorial Day weekend.
All drivers who use the express lanes must have an E-ZPass or an E-ZPass Flex.
AAA Mid-Atlantic said about one in six D.C. area residents will be traveling more than 50 miles this extended weekend.
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