Look out, truckers ... Toll rates, Tappan Zee price tag ain't cheap

By David Tanner, Land Line associate editor | 8/21/2012

Truckers stand to pay significantly more to get across a new Tappan Zee Bridge in New York once the $5.2 billion project is completed in a few years. The New York Metropolitan Transportation Council approved a plan on Monday, Aug. 20, to replace the three-mile bridge.

The council approval prompted Gov. Andrew Cuomo to apply for a $2 billion federal loan.

Under the plan, the current $5 toll for cars could nearly triple to $14.

Truckers have reason to be concerned based on that formula.

A five-axle truck currently that currently pays $6.75 to $13.50 for an eastbound trip and between $16.48 and $32.75 for a southbound trip depending on time of day could pay between $20 and $40 for an eastbound trip and between $49 and $98 for a southbound trip should the same formula be used.

The Tappan Zee, which opened in 1955, is part of the New York State Thruway system but carries a separate toll.

Truckers are still fighting a plan by the Thruway Authority to charge commercial vehicles 45 percent more to run the Thruway’s mainline. A full-length toll of $88 would become $127 under that plan.

If that weren’t enough, truckers are also facing steep toll increases on the George Washington Bridge and other facilities maintained by the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. The recent $40 toll on the George Washington increased to $50 this year and is scheduled to become $90 by 2015.

“The toll increase on the Tappan Zee, combined with other toll increases by the Port Authority and the Thruway Authority, is going to have a major impact on logistics in the New York area,” said OOIDA Director of Legislative Affairs Ryan Bowley.

“These tolls are stifling to businesses.”

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