I-66 Express Lanes lead to more congestion, citations for some drivers

The I-66 shoulder lane control signs and active traffic management system will be dismantled over the coming weeks. The clay colored pavement atop the shoulder lanes is already being milled in preparation for the lane shifts necessary to begin construction of the express lanes. (WTOP/Dave Dildine)
WASHINGTON — The new toll system along the 66 Express Lanes from Northern Virginia to the District is causing more problems than solutions for some commuters.

While some drivers are willing to pay the sometimes steep tolls, other commuters are now faced with major congestion. According to The Washington Post, many commuters are trying to avoid paying tolls by leaving later in the morning, resulting in about 30 percent fewer cars on the roadway at 5 a.m.

This means drivers still face bumper to bumper traffic, only later in the morning.

Drivers opting for other routes are also seeing more congestion as more and more people try to avoid the new toll system.

The new toll system has also led some drivers to pull over on the shoulder before entering 66 Express moments before tolling ends, hoping to avoid paying. Others have been caught switching their E-ZPass transponder to carpool mode. The post reports in the 10 months following the system’s opening, 614 HOV violations were issued.

The new system, so far, has cost many drivers more money or more time during the morning commute.

Here is a full list of tips from the Montgomery County Police Department on keeping safe.

Melissa Howell

Melissa Howell joined WTOP Radio in March 2018 and is excited to cover stories that matter across D.C., as well as in Maryland and Virginia. 

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