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Indiana tollway rates less than some other states

June 30, 2011|By Kristin Bien (kbien@wsbt.com)

Starting Friday, drivers are going to pay more to use the Indiana Toll Road. But, compared to other states, the rates drivers pay is less per mile in Indiana.

On July 1, it will cost $9 for most cars and trucks to drive the full 157 miles of the Indiana Toll Road. That's up 20 cents from this time last year. If you have an electronic transponder like the iZoom from Indiana, or the I-Pass from Illinois, this increase will not affect you. You'll continue to pay about half, $4.65. Semi driver rates will go up by a dollar to $36.20 for the full trip.

And while no one likes to hear the words "more money," many drivers say, it could be worse.

Bob and Joanne Francesconi live in Pennsylvania. They are heading to LaPorte. It is a trip they make at least once a month to see their son. They take the Toll Road -- All the way from Pennsylvania through Indiana.

"They [the tolls] aren't too bad in Indiana. Ohio is more expensive in Indiana," says Bob, "It could be worse. As long as they maintain the highways."

WSBT did the math.

To drive the 546 miles of Pennsylvania Turnpike, drivers with an EZ Pass pay about 8 cents a mile. Without an EZ Pass, it is 9 cents a mile.

Then heading into Ohio drivers pay about 4 cents a mile with an EZ Pass to drive the 241 miles of turnpike there. It is about 6 cents a mile for those without an EZ Pass.
 
And in Indiana, we found to drive 157 miles of toll road it does indeed cost less. For customers with the iZoom its about 2-cents a mile. For those without, it is about 5 cents a mile.

Tollway Rates Per Mile:
                         EZ Pass/iZoom                     Cash
Indiana                     $.02                                 $.05
Ohio                         $.04                                 $.06
Pennsylvania             $.08                                 $.09

Even when rates increase Friday for drivers, there won't be a change per mile.  

Indiana leased the toll road to a private company, that company paid the state of Indiana $3.85 billion to operate and maintain the toll road. On average, about 45 million vehicles travel the Indiana Toll Road every year.

The Ohio and Pennsylvania turnpikes are both state operated or state related.

The Ohio turnpike doesn't share a budget with the state but it is operated by the state. All the money made on the turnpike is used for maintenance and operation of the road. About 49 million vehicles travel that road every year.

In Pennsylvania the turnpike was created by a state law but is operated by a commission. Money made on the turnpike is used to maintain and operate the road as well as generate revenue for the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation. About 190 million vehicles travel that road every year.

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