The New York State Thruway Authority should pay close attention
to this one.
Ohio Department of Transportation officials reported in
early June that truck traffic on the Ohio Turnpike has increased by about 24
percent since the commission made a series of sweeping changes in 2004,
according to The Associated Press.
In the fall of last year, the Ohio Turnpike Commission
decided to increase the speed limit and reduce tolls for trucks in an effort to
lure them back to the turnpike.
Trucks left the pike in droves following an 82 percent toll
increase in 1999. The result was a dramatic increase in truck traffic through
small towns along state highways. This, in turn, led to a backlash from those
towns whose residents were fed up with the traffic.
But angry residents were only part of the problem for the
According to the commission’s annual report, toll revenue
from commercial vehicles – which accounts for about half of the turnpike’s toll
revenue – dropped by $4.3 million between 1999 and 2003.
In 2004, the speed limit for large trucks was increased to
65 mph – the same speed as all other vehicles – while the toll rates were
dropped anywhere from 2 percent to 57 percent, depending on the size of the
For Class 8 trucks, they cut the toll to travel the 241-mile
turnpike from Indiana to Pennsylvania from $42.45 to $31.