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Williamson County Officials Discuss Toll Lanes On I-35
Texas transportation officials have been trying to figure out solutions to I-35 traffic troubles for years, and some think tolling individual lanes could be the answer.
It was discussed during Williamson County’s weekly commissioner’s court meeting on Tuesday. Williamson County Commissioner Lisa Birkman was among those who brought up the issue at the weekly meeting, but drivers we spoke with are less than thrilled with the idea.
Cheryl Prochasaa says she tried to avoid I-35 as much as possible. “The toll lane is just one more way to get money from us, that’s the way I see it,” she says. “We already paid for the roads, why pay for something that we already paid for?”
“I would be opposed to that, I’m not crazy of all the toll roads that have been put in place,” says Rick Sliva, a lifelong Roind Rock resident. He says, “There needs to be another way, an alternative around the west side or something, I don’t know if it’s too expensive for land, but there’s got to be another way around.”
At this point the issue is only in the talking stages, there are no concrete plans. The decision would have to be made by the Texas Department of Transportation.
In a statement to KEYE TV news, TxDOT said, “The concept of tolled express lanes for Interstate 35 in the Austin area is part of a general discussion of many ideas with local governments about ways to decrease congestion on the interstate. We are in the very early stages of gathering suggestions and support for solving this very complex problem.”
Express lanes or high occupancy toll lanes also known as HOT lanes are being used in Dallas and Houston.
By Lydia Pantazes