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Hochul announces removal of final toll barrier on NYS Thruway


Mon, Aug 30th 2021 12:15 pm

‘Significant milestone’ in conversion to cashless tolling

√ In total, 52 toll plazas and 230 individual toll booths removed to create highway speed, true open-road tolling
√ $355 million cashless tolling design-build project on schedule to be completed by end of October, weather-permitting

Gov. Kathy Hochul on Monday announced the removal of the final toll booths on the New York State Thruway, a “historic and significant milestone” in the $355 million cashless tolling design-build project. Cashless Tolling Constructors LLC began removing the last standing toll plaza at Exit 60 (Westfield), the final of 52 toll plazas, including 230 individual toll booths, that have been removed since cashless tolling went live in November 2020.

"Cashless tolling not only helps improve safety and traffic flow on our state's highways, but it's a critical component in helping strengthen New York's economy, both regionally and statewide," Hochul said. "As someone who has spent countless hours traveling every inch of the thruway, I can attest how transformative this milestone is for the hundreds of thousands of motorists who utilize this roadway each day, and I thank the hundreds of people who continue to work around the clock to improve New York's transportation system every day."

Exit realignment and road reconstruction continues at interchanges across the thruway system and is on schedule to be completed by the end of October, weather-permitting.

Thruway Authority Executive Director Matthew J. Driscoll said, "The implementation of cashless tolling is one of the largest and most comprehensive projects in the nearly 70-year history of the New York State Thruway Authority. Over the last two-plus years, hundreds of women and men have dedicated thousands of hours into this transformative project that has significantly enhanced the future of transportation decades to come."

The transition to cashless tolling on the thruway system began in 2016 on the then Tappan Zee Bridge, now Governor Mario M. Cuomo Bridge, followed by the remaining fixed-price barriers in 2018.

In 2019, construction started on the thruway's 400-mile ticketed system with the installation of gantries at 52 tolling locations, including gantries over the main highway and on entrance/exit ramps. Gantries installed over the mainline highway range from 58 feet to 150 feet in length by 23 feet in height, weighing between 25,000 and 104,000 pounds. Gantries installed over the entrance/exit ramps range from 48 feet to 94 feet in length by 23 feet in height, weighing between 33,000 and 74,000 pounds. Gantries were fabricated utilizing approximately 3.5 million pounds of 100% American-made steel in accordance with the New York Buy American Act, and with hundreds of New York workers at LMC Industrial Contractors Inc. in Livingston County.

Cashless tolling went live on the ticketed system on Nov. 14, 2020. Since that time, millions of transactions have been successfully recorded on the system featuring more than 2,000 state-of-the-art cameras affixed to the gantries statewide. In 2019, 282 million vehicle trips were documented on the thruway's 570-mile superhighway, accounting for more than 8.4 billion total miles traveled.

To further enhance the cashless tolling experience, motorists are encouraged to download the Tolls NY mobile app, which allows drivers to manage and update their E-ZPass account, pay toll bills, and receive account alerts.

Motorists are encouraged to sign up for E-ZPass. New York accountholders pay 30% less than the tolls-by-mail toll rate and avoid any administrative surcharges. E-ZPass tags are sold at more than 900 locations across the state. To find a retailer, visit thruway.ny.gov/getezpass.

For additional information on how cashless tolling works and tips on how to pay bills on time, visit the Thruway Authority's website at thruway.ny.gov.

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