Maryland proposes tolls on new connector

| 9/24/2009

The Maryland Transportation Authority says tolls are needed to pay for a 19-mile roadway linking I-370 to the I-95 business corridor. The roadway has been dubbed the Intercounty Connector.

Proposed tolls for five-axle trucks will range from $1.50 to $2.10 during peak times and from $1.20 to $1.80 during off-peak times according to the proposal. The tollway will be cashless, relying on E-ZPass as well as a camera system to photograph license plates for toll bills to be sent through the mail.

The first section of the road, 5.5 miles from Interstate 370 to Route 97, is scheduled to open in 2010 with the rest coming later.

The Maryland Transportation Authority has scheduled two informational meetings and two public hearings on the proposed toll rates. Each event is scheduled from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

Informational meetings:
Oct. 19 at High Point High School, 3601 Powder Mill Road, Beltsville, MD
Oct. 21 at John F. Kennedy High School, 1901 Randolph Road, Silver Spring, MD

Public hearings:
Oct. 28 at High Point High School, 3601 Powder Mill Road, Beltsville, MD
Oct. 29 at Shady Grove Middle School, 8100 Midcounty Hwy., Gaithersburg, MD

Public comments are due by 5 p.m., Nov. 23. Visit or mail comments to ICC Project Office, Attn: ICC Tolls, 11710 Beltsville Drive, Suite 200, Beltsville, MD 20705.

The Maryland Transportation Authority Board of Directors is scheduled to make a final decision Dec. 17.

The MDTA currently operates 70 miles of tolled bridges, tunnels and roadways, including the 48-mile John F. Kennedy Memorial Highway.

– By David Tanner, staff writer