Monday November 06, 2017
The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) will kick off a weeklong celebration beginning today with free gifts for those opening new ExpressLanes accounts and user appreciation giveaways in celebration of the 5th anniversary of the successful Metro ExpressLanes on the Harbor Freeway.
The Metro ExpressLanes along the I-110 Harbor Freeway are an innovative project to help reduce traffic congestion in the HOV lanes and opened to the public on Nov. 10, 2012. The opening marked the debut of Los Angeles County’s first High Occupancy Toll (HOT) lanes, which allow solo drivers who pay an electric toll to travel in 11 miles of converted carpool lanes on the I-110.
Since the inception of the ExpressLanes, more than 154 million trips have been taken with 100.8 million occurring along the I-110 ExpressLanes and 53.9 million on the I-10 ExpressLanes. A total of 721,183 transponders have been issued, including 14,200 Low-Assistance-Plan accounts.
“Easing congestion is one of Metro’s top priorities, and the last five years have shown us that ExpressLanes can help us make real progress,” said Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, Chair of the Metro Board. “Since we created this program, ExpressLanes have helped us increase Metro ridership, save time for travelers, and find more efficient ways to help people across our region get where they want to go.”
During the weeklong celebration, Metro ExpressLanes Customer Service Centers in Gardena and El Monte will be offering free ExpressLanes mugs, hats or tumblers to all new customers who open an account. In addition, staff will be handing out 5th Anniversary Metro ExpressLanes cinch bags to transit riders at the Harbor Gateway Transit Center in Gardena.
In appreciation of their loyalty, all customers who are Low Income Assistance Plan holders will receive a $10 toll credit. In addition, toll credits will be given to the first five customers that opened a Metro ExpressLanes account, the first five customers who enrolled in a low income assistance plan, the first five carpoolers to travel on the I-110 ExpressLanes and the first five customers that signed up for the Transit Rewards program. Customers must still have an active account and be in good standing to receive the toll credits.
Metro currently operates ExpressLanes along the 1-110 and 1-10 freeways for a total of 25 miles of converted carpool lanes to HOT lanes. All vehicles need a transponder to use the lanes. Solo drivers are charged a toll and toll-free travel is available to all carpools that meet minimum occupancy requirements, vanpools, buses and motorcycles. The I-110 ExpressLanes operate between Adams Boulevard and the 91 freeway. The 1-10 ExpressLanes opened to the public in February 2013 and operate between the 605 freeway and Alameda in downtown Los Angeles.
“We are appreciative of those who have used Metro ExpressLanes over the last five years and encourage others to join the celebration and open an account to take advantage of this time saving option that will improve their mobility,” said Metro CEO Phillip A. Washington.
In the past fiscal year, vehicle trips in the ExpressLanes continued to rise to 41.3 million with about 62 percent of those trips on the I-110 and 38 percent on the I-10. Average vehicle speeds have dipped slightly on both the I-10 and I-110 compared to two years ago, but remains faster than the general purpose lanes.
The biggest time savings have been in the morning when ExpressLanes users can save up to 15 minutes on the westbound I-10 and 13.4 minutes on the Northbound I-110.
Metro is currently looking at expanding ExpressLanes to other area freeways including the I-105 freeway between the 405 and the 605 freeways and on the 405 freeway over the Sepulveda Pass. Both projects are slated for completion in the late 2020s under the Measure M expenditure plan.
The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority (Metro) is unique among the nation’s transportation agencies. Created in 1993, Metro is a multimodal transportation agency that transports about 1.3 million passengers daily on a fleet of 2,200 clean air buses and six rail lines. The agency also oversees bus, rail, highway and other mobility-related building projects and leads transportation planning and programming for Los Angeles County.
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