Tolling on the State Route 520 Bridge will start Dec. 29, the Washington State Department of Transportation announced Wednesday, linking Seattle and the Eastside.
Much of the delay has stemmed from issues with and testing of the tolling system, state officials have said.
According to WSDOT, the toll system’s components have been tested and retested since summer to ensure they can collect data at highway speeds and create transactions for the more than 100,000 vehicles that cross the bridge daily. WSDOT also brought in national tolling experts to review the system and expanded its customer service support, according to a news release from the state agency.
The tolls are part of the $2.37-billion the state is raising for a State Route 520 improvement project that would , widen the freeway, and add carpool lanes in both directions.
Instead of toll booths, the tolls will be paid through , a system that uses electronic transponders attached to vehicles to debit motorists' accounts. Vehicles that don't have the transponders will have photos taken of their license plate, adn then will be billed through the mail, Matkin said.
The toll schedule includes a $3.50-peak hour toll in both ways, but the toll will vary depending on the hour, so it will be less than that at non-peak hour times. Drivers without a Good to Go account will pay a $1.50 fee every time they cross the bridge, according to the state.
The state has a number of options for Good to Go accounts, and state officials have advised motorists to obtain the passes before tolling starts.
Commuters will be able to purchase the transponders at any , , and , and at a customer service center in Bellevue at 13107 NE 20th Street, Suites 3 & 4, Bellevue. Customers also can establish an account online at mygoodtogo.com.