Office of the Governor
Governor McGreevey unveils high speed E-ZPass
Barrier-free lanes designed to ease auto congestion
(Trenton) - Moving forward on his commitment to overhaul and reform the E-ZPass system, Governor James E. McGreevey today announced a plan to implement high-speed E-ZPass lanes along the New Jersey Turnpike and Garden State Parkway to help alleviate traffic congestion.
The barrier-free lanes positioned at key toll plazas along the roadways would allow motorists to travel through the toll lanes at speeds close to 50 miles per hour and reduce delays associated with traditional toll taking methods currently in place. In place of tollbooths, an overhead gantry would read traditional E-ZPass transponders as they passed through at faster speeds.
“This Administration has taken significant action to improve the quality of our roadways, reduce traffic congestion and enhance our transportation infrastructure,” said McGreevey. “High-speed E-ZPass is another way we are going to keep New Jersey moving. This technology will allow New Jersey drivers to spend more time at home with their families, and less time in their cars in traffic.”
High speed E-ZPass marks a dramatic increase in the number of vehicles that pass through toll taking methods. Currently, a typical tollbooth with a “basket style” method of payment can handle a maximum of 800 vehicles per hour. A tollbooth utilizing the current E-ZPass system—those at which cars can pass through at 15 mph—can accommodate 1,200 vehicles per hour. Comparatively, a high-speed E-ZPass lane can accommodate 2,000 vehicles per hour—almost double the amount as current E-ZPass lanes.
The high-speed locations would be installed along the Garden State Parkway at the Hillsdale, Toms River, Raritan South, and Asbury Park toll plazas. On the New Jersey Turnpike the new lanes will be added at Interchanges 18W and 18E. High-speed E-ZPass will also be implemented at the Pleasantville toll plaza on the Atlantic City Expressway. All seven locations were selected based upon a thorough analysis that took into consideration road design, and high traffic locations coupled with high E-ZPass usage.
According to the schedule, the Hillsdale toll plaza will be the first to undergo construction beginning in mid-2003 and being completed by the end of the year. Pleasantville will also be complete by the end of 2003. The remaining locations will be complete by Memorial Day 2005.
The total cost for the entire project is $45 million.