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Date: Nov 2014

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Nov. 24, 2014

Contact: 1st Sgt. Jonathan Green, 410-537-7724

BRING YOUR TOYS FOR TOTS ON YOUR COMMUTE TO THE ICC/LAYHILL ROAD INTERCHANGE

BALTIMORE, MD - Join the MD Transportation Authority (MDTA) Police, MDTA staff and the U.S. Marine Corps Reserves in the national Toys for Tots campaign at the Intercounty Connector (ICC)/MD 200. Since 1990, MDTA employees have collected more than 138,000 toys from customers of the toll facilities and the Port of Baltimore.

From Wednesday, Dec. 3 - Friday, Dec. 5, from 6 to 9 a.m. and from 3 to 5 p.m. daily, employees will collect new, unwrapped toys at the ICC/Layhill Road (MD 182) interchange.

Customers who wish to donate toys should follow directions from uniformed MDTA police officers or MDTA maintenance staff, who will be on the right shoulders of the ramps from eastbound and westbound ICC to Layhill Road. Officers will direct motorists who need to re-enter the ICC.

"Once again, we are excited about this opportunity for all of the citizens we serve to donate toys for those less fortunate," said MDTA Executive Director Bruce W. Gartner. "Each year, the men and women of the MDTA look forward to this holiday tradition."

The MDTA Police remind drivers to keep safety in mind as they approach toy drop-off sites. Toys may be dropped off at designated sites during scheduled times only.

MDTA employees also will collect new, unwrapped toys at the Bay Bridge (US 50/301), the Gov. Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge (US 301), the Baltimore Harbor and Fort McHenry tunnels (I-895, I-95/I-395), the Francis Scott Key Bridge (I-695), the Thomas J. Hatem Memorial Bridge (US 40) and the Dundalk Marine Terminal. Toys collected at the ICC will be given to the U.S. Marine Corps Reserves base in Baltimore for distribution.

For more information on the MDTA's collection efforts, visit mdta.maryland.gov. For more on the Toys for Tots program, visit toysfortots.org. For real-time updates on major incidents follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/TheMDTA. Find us at facebook.com/TheMDTA and mdta.maryland.gov. Call 511 or visit MD511.org for statewide travel information.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Nov. 20, 2014

Contact:         John Sales

                       410-537-1017

 

 

BUSY THANKSGIVING WEEK ANTICIPATED AT MARYLAND’S TOLL FACILITIES

 

BALTIMORE, MD -- As the Thanksgiving holiday approaches, the Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) reminds motorists to travel during off-peak hours, stay alert and plan ahead to avoid travel delays.  Based on traffic counts from previous years, Wednesday is expected to be the heaviest travel day, with many travelers also expected to hit the roads Tuesday.

The MDTA anticipates a one percent increase in traffic volumes compared to last year’s Thanksgiving holiday period.  Between Tuesday, Nov. 25, and Sunday, Nov. 30, the MDTA expects more than 2.6 million travelers on its highways, bridges and tunnels:

·         Fort McHenry Tunnel (I-95) – more than 726,000 vehicles.

·         John F. Kennedy Memorial Highway (I-95) – nearly 667,000 vehicles.

·         William Preston Lane Jr. Memorial (Bay) Bridge (US 50/301) – more than 428,000 vehicles.

·         An additional 846,000 vehicles are projected to travel the Francis Scott Key Bridge
(I-695), the Baltimore Harbor Tunnel (I-895), the Thomas J. Hatem Memorial Bridge
(US 40) and the Governor Harry W. Nice Memorial Bridge (US 301) combined. 

All figures represent traffic volumes in both directions.

The MDTA offers the following tips to help motorists reach their destinations safely:

·         Travel during off-peak hours to avoid significant delays.  For the I-95 corridor, off-peak hours include:

  •   Tuesday and Wednesday -- before 6 a.m. and after 11 p.m.
  •   Thursday through Sunday -- before 9 a.m. and after 9 p.m.

·         Game Plan for your travels.

  •   For real-time updates on major incidents follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/TheMDTA.  Find us on Facebook at facebook.com/TheMDTA To view real-time traffic camera images on MDTA roadways, visit mdta.maryland.gov.  Call 511 or visit MD511.org for statewide travel information.
  •   Call 1-877-BAYSPAN (229-7726) for 24/7 Bay Bridge traffic conditions.  Visit baybridge.com to view traffic cameras at the bridge and to sign up for email alerts.
  •   A hands-free device any traveler will love.  Visit ezpassmd.com to enroll on-line and for a list of E-ZPass “On the Go” retail locations.

·         Consider the Intercounty Connector (ICC)/MD 200 in your holiday travels.  The ICC now connects I-270/I-370 and Konterra Drive/US 1.

Reminder:  The Chesapeake and Maryland House Travel Plazas are both open for service on I-95.

Keeping traffic moving as safely and efficiently as possible is the MDTA’s priority.  The MDTA Police will remain vigilant and target aggressive and impaired drivers, seatbelt violators and criminal activity.  The MDTA Police and Courtesy Patrol Units will have additional patrols on duty to respond quickly to incidents and disabled vehicles.  In addition, the MDTA will lift construction-related temporary lane closures at its facilities from Tuesday, Nov. 25, to Monday, Dec. 1.

For your safety and the safety of other motorists and emergency personnel:

·         Obey posted speed limits and overhead lane-control signals.

·         Devote your full attention to driving – it is illegal to text and use hand-held cell phones while driving in Maryland.

·         State law requires that every passenger in a moving vehicle be secured with a seat belt or child safety restraint.

·         Keep a safe following distance to avoid rear-end collisions.

·         Keep your eyes on the road – do not sight-see, especially on bridges.

·         Do not change lanes while traveling over bridges and through tunnels.

·         Make sure your vehicle is “road ready.”

·         If your vehicle becomes disabled, remain inside and call #77 for assistance.

·         When contacting a dispatch center, motorists should be prepared to provide the following:

• The location of the emergency

• A call-back telephone number

• Details of the incident/accident/disabled vehicle/or other circumstances                                    

·         State law requires vehicles to move over when approaching an emergency vehicle or tow truck using visual signals.  If you are unable to move over, slow down.

·         Drunk Driving. Over the limit. Under Arrest.

In accordance with the State’s budget-reduction plan, MDTA offices will be closed on Friday, Nov. 28, including the E-ZPass Maryland Stop-in Centers and Customer Service Center.  Visit ezpassmd.com or use the automated system at 1-888-321-6824 to sign up for E-ZPass, update account information or make payments via credit card.  Offices will reopen on Monday, Dec. 1.

REMINDER:

Dateline for I-95 Express Toll Lanes (ETL) Opening in Baltimore:

  • Saturday, Dec. 6, by 6 a.m.:  I-95 ETL opens between I-895 and MD 43 (weather permitting).
  • Saturday, Dec. 6 – Friday, Dec. 12 at midnight: Test-drive period -- no tolls will be collected.
  • Saturday, Dec. 13, 12:01 a.m.: Toll collection begins.

For more information, visit mdta.maryland.gov.

 

For real-time updates on major incidents follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/TheMDTA.

The MDTA thanks motorists for their patience.  Stay Alert So No One Gets Hurt!

 

###

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Nov. 17, 2014

Contact:          Cheryl M. Sparks

                        410-537-1017

NEW I-95 EXPRESS TOLL LANES TO OPEN DEC. 6
Test Drive The ETL At No Charge Through Dec. 12;
I-95 Improvements Enhance Highway Safety Along Congested Corridor

BALTIMORE, MD – The Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) today announced that it will open the I-95 Express Toll Lanes (ETL) in northeast Baltimore by 6 a.m. on Saturday, Dec. 6, 2014, weather permitting.  Drivers will be able to ‘test drive’ the I-95 ETL, located between I-895 and just north of MD 43 (White Marsh Boulevard), at no charge from the opening on Dec. 6 through Dec. 12, helping the MDTA to test the tolling equipment under actual traffic conditions and allowing all drivers an opportunity to become familiar with the I-95 ETL. 

“The I-95 Express Toll Lanes were built to improve travel and traffic safety today, and are designed to handle growing traffic volumes along this busy stretch of I-95 for decades to come,” class="A1"said MDTA Executive Director Bruce W. Gartner.  “The I-95 ETL will provide motorists with a convenient choice for reliable travel.”

In its first full year of operation, the JFK Highway/I-95 carried an estimated 30,000 vehicles per day in 1964.  Currently, approximately 177,000 vehicles travel this section of I-95 each weekday, with traffic projected to increase to nearly 200,000 vehicles per weekday by 2025.  Motorists are most likely to use the I-95 ETL during rush hours, holidays and major traffic incidents.  The new lanes are part of a comprehensive I-95 Improvement Project focused on enhancing highway safety along this vital economic corridor.

The $1.08 billion I-95 Improvement Project includes two new ETL in each direction of I-95, adjacent to the existing four general-purpose (non-tolled) lanes, as well as
$756 million in significant highway and safety enhancements.  These upgrades included:

  • Reconfigured three major I-95 interchanges (I-895, I-695 and MD 43) to improve traffic operations and enhance safety;
  • Eliminated left-hand exits from the general-purpose lanes at the I-695 interchange;
  • Modified the traffic pattern on southbound I-95 at I-895, giving priority movement to the majority of motorists who continue along I-95; and
  • Replaced two structurally deficient bridges at MD 43.

Note: Even though the I-95 ETL will open to traffic on Dec. 6, drivers will still see related construction activities throughout the project limits.

Like the Intercounty Connector/MD 200, there will be no toll plazas on the I-95 ETL. Tolls will be collected electronically at highway speeds using E-ZPass® as vehicles pass beneath overhead tolling structures.  The I-95 ETL also will use Video Tolling for drivers who do not have E-ZPass.  Toll rates vary by time of day, direction of travel and method of payment.

The I-95 ETL per-mile toll rates are at the low end of the ETL tolling plan approved by the MDTA Board in December 2013.  Drivers of two-axle vehicles with E-ZPass will pay a total of $1.75 during peak hours, $1.40 during off-peak hours and $0.70 overnight per trip to use the new lanes after the test-drive period.

 

E-ZPass Toll Rates*:

Pricing
Period

2-axle/
Motorcycle
3-axle4-axle5-axle6-axle+
Peak:$1.75$5.25$7.91$10.50$13.16
Off-Peak:$1.40$4.20$6.30$8.40$10.50
Overnight:$0.70$2.10$3.15$4.20$5.25

 

 

 

 

 

 

Video Toll Rates*:

Pricing
Period

2-axle/
Motorcycle
3-axle4-axle5-axle6-axle+
Peak:$2.75$7.88$11.87$15.75$19.74
Off-Peak:$2.40$6.30$9.45$12.60$15.75
Overnight:$1.70$3.15$4.73$6.30$7.88

 

 

 

 

 


*holiday rates differ; visit mdta.maryland.gov

 

Pricing Periods:

SOUTHBOUND  
?Peak:  

 

Mon-Fri6 am - 9 am
 Sat12 pm - 2 pm
 Sun2 pm - 5 pm
Off-Peak:  
 Mon-Fri5 am - 6 am / 9 am - 9 pm
 Sat5 am - 12 pm / 2 pm - 9 pm
 Sun5 am - 2 pm / 5 pm - 9 pm  
Overnight:  
 Mon-Sun9 pm-5 am
NORTHBOUND  
?Peak:  

 

Mon-Fri3 pm - 7 pm
 Sat12 pm - 2 pm
 Sun2 pm - 5 pm
Off-Peak:  
 Mon-Fri5 am - 3 pm / 7 pm - 9 pm
 Sat5 am - 12 pm / 2 pm - 9 pm
 Sun5 am - 2 pm / 5 pm - 9 pm  
Overnight:  
 Mon-Sun9 pm-5 am

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

Drivers without a valid E-ZPass account will pay a Video Toll Rate to travel the I-95 ETL.  A Notice of Toll Due will be sent to the registered owner of the vehicle for the cost of the Video Toll, which is 1.5 times the E-ZPass toll rates, with a minimum of $1/maximum of $15 above the E-ZPass rates.

MDTA Executive Director Gartner set the I-95 ETL holiday rates for the remainder of 2014, which are available at mdta.maryland.gov.

The I-95 ETL are eight miles (seven tolled) of “through” lanes between White Marsh and Baltimore.  Motorists will be able to access the I-95 ETL from I-95, I-895, MD 43 at I-95 and Moravia Road at I-895.  For a map and simulation video of the I-95 Improvement Project with ETL, including where motorists can enter and exit the ETL, visit mdta.maryland.gov. In addition, the Maryland Transit Administration has two express bus service routes out of White Marsh and three commuter bus routes that will benefit from using the new I-95 ETL.

To sign up for E-ZPass, visit ezpassmd.com to enroll online or get a list of E-ZPass “On the Go” retail locations.  E-ZPass Stop-in Centers are located at local Motor Vehicle Administration offices and are adjacent to Maryland toll plazas.

Dateline for I-95 ETL Opening:

  • Saturday, Dec. 6, by 6 a.m.:  I-95 ETL open between I-895 and MD 43 (weather permitting).
  • Saturday, Dec. 6 – Friday, Dec. 12 at midnight: Test-drive period -- no tolls will be collected.
  • Saturday, Dec. 13, 12:01 a.m.: Toll collection begins.

For real-time updates on major incidents follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/TheMDTA.  Find us on Facebook at facebook.com/TheMDTA.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Nov. 13, 2014

Contact:          Cheryl M. Sparks or Rebecca Freeberger

                        410-537-1017 

REMINDER:  TOLL VIOLATORS MUST PAY TO AVOID SUSPENSION OF VEHICLE REGISTRATIONS

BALTIMORE, MD – Next week, the MD Transportation Authority (MDTA) will begin sending courtesy-reminder notices to the registered owners of approximately 131,000 vehicles with unpaid toll violations and civil penalties before it begins referring these violators for non-renewal and suspension of their vehicle registrations in January.  Approximately 9,000 of these registrations are at risk of suspension. 

The ability to flag the registrations of motorists who continue to ignore their bills – even after ample time to pay – gives the MDTA the tool it needs to collect Video Tolls.  The MDTA is assuring the 99 percent of motorists who do pay their tolls that it is not letting toll violators get away without paying. In addition, 93,000 out-of-state registered owners will have their Maryland toll debt referred to Maryland’s Central Collection Unit (CCU) in January.

In July 2013, new legislation established a civil citation process to help the State collected unpaid tolls.  Following the law’s implementation in October 2013, more drivers now are paying their Video Tolls.  The payment rate for Video Toll transactions has increased from approximately 60 to 70 percent.  Video Tolls represent less than three percent of the MDTA’s total transactions and toll revenues. 

With Video Tolling, registered vehicle owners receive a Notice of Toll Due (NOTD) for using any of Maryland’s eight toll facilities without paying with cash or E-ZPass®. The NOTD allows the vehicle owner to pay the Video Toll transaction within 30 days without any penalties or additional fees.

Those who do not pay within 30 days receive a civil citation and $50 fine for each unpaid Video Toll transaction in addition to the Video Toll amount.  The owner may pay the citation and fine or contest the citation in District Court.  Motorists who do not pay or contest civil citations and fines within 30 days will be referred to the Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA) as follows:

  • Less than $1,000 (unpaid tolls and fines) – Referred for non-renewal flag of vehicle registration.
  • $1,000 or more (unpaid tolls and fines) – Referred for suspension of vehicle registration.

To ensure their license plates or toll debt are not referred to the Maryland MVA or to the CCU in January 2015, it is advisable for violators to pay up by Jan. 6, 2015.

The MDTA estimates that this backlog of registration flagging and CCU referrals resulting from the implementation of the law last October will be cleared in spring 2015.  At that time, the referral process will operate automatically on a daily basis.

Customers with unpaid Maryland tolls can pay by the following methods:

  • Visit ezpassmd.com;
  • Mail check/money order payable to E-ZPass Maryland to P.O. Box 17600, Baltimore, MD 21297;
  • Call the E-ZPass Maryland Customer Service Center during regular business hours (7 a.m. - 6 p.m., Monday – Friday) at 1-888-321-6824;
  • Visit an E-ZPass Maryland Stop-In Center.

 

Process to Fully Open Both Roadways Starts Friday Evening; Motorists Are Urged to Pay Attention to New Traffic Patterns

(November 5, 2014)  – Beginning Friday evening, November 7, crews will begin opening the final section of the Intercounty Connector (ICC) / MD 200 to US 1 in Prince George’s County.  During this same time, crews also will begin opening the I-95 / Konterra Drive (formerly Contee Road) Interchange, located between the ICC and MD 198.  Both the ICC and the new interchange will open to traffic by morning rush hour on Monday, November 10, weather permitting.

The last segment of the ICC extends 1.5 miles from I-95 to US 1 in Laurel.  This project also includes a partial interchange at Konterra Drive and a signalized intersection at US 1 (click here for fact sheet) near the MARC commuter station on Muirkirk Road.  Commuters will have improved access to the Muirkirk MARC Station by traveling eastbound on the ICC/MD 200 to Konterra Drive (Exit 20), turn right, then left at the traffic signal on Muirkirk Road over US 1 to a left into the entrance for the MARC station.  The final ICC contract included improvements to I-95 to create new collector-distributor (CD) lanes for access to and from the new Konterra Drive, the ICC and MD 198 interchanges (click here for project map).  The consolidated exits improve safety by separating slower exiting and entering traffic from mainline travel lanes.

The portion of the ICC between I-270/I-370 and MD 97 opened February 2011 and the remainder to I-95 opened to traffic November 2011.  The State Highway Administration (SHA) designed and built the toll highway, which is operated and maintained by the Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA).  The ICC is an all-electronic, variably priced toll facility, where higher tolls are charged during peak-travel times (Monday through Friday, between 6 - 9 am and 4 - 7 pm) and reduced tolls are charged during off-peak and overnight hours.  ICC tolls are collected at highway speeds using E-ZPass® and Video Tolling to maintain relatively free-flowing traffic conditions.  The ICC per-mile toll rates will remain the same with the opening to US 1.

Simultaneous to the opening of the final segment of the ICC, SHA will open a new I-95 interchange at Konterra Drive.  Located along I-95 between the ICC and MD 198, the new interchange will serve Konterra Drive, which extends from Old Gunpowder Road to the west to Muirkirk Road to the east, providing better access to the Laurel Regional Hospital and a future 2,200-acre mixed-use development at Konterra.

Motorists should use caution when traveling through the area over the weekend as crews will open the connecting ramps, roads and CD lanes in phases.  Drivers are urged to follow signs, watch for construction crews and prepare for new traffic patterns.

SHA’s contractor for the final ICC project was a joint venture design-build team including Shirley Contracting Company, LLC, Clark Construction Group, LLC, Facchina Construction Company, Inc. and Trumbull Corporation.  The lead design firm was Dewberry & Davis, LLC.   The contractor for the I-95/ Konterra Drive interchange was American Infrastructure, Inc.

For more information about using the ICC and signing up for E-ZPass, visit class www.mdta.maryland.gov and for more information about the ICC project visit www.iccproject.com and for state highways, visit www.roads.maryland.gov.

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