I-85 HOT Lane Falls Short

One year later, the controversial HOT lane is making money, but not nearly as much as projected.


After one year of operating, the I-85 HOT lane is making money but falls short of even the lowest revenue predictions, the AJC reported.

The controversial toll lane was unpopular with drivers as soon as it was rolled out on Oct. 1, 2011, forcing the state to lower the tolls in order to attract cars into the lane, according to the AJC.

But drivers are using the HOT lane. Thousands have signed up for the Peach Pass, and in the first 11 months, that brought in $3.05 million. That's short of the projected revenue of $3.3 million to $6.7 million, according to figures from the AJC.

But income is increasing, and if it continues, revenues might eventually pay for the costs of operating the lane. That wasn't the reason for creating the toll, though. The AJC reports that the goal of the toll lanes, according to state officials, was to better manage traffic and to give paying drivers a choice.

State Road and Tollway Authority officials say they’re not disappointed with the revenues. A spokesman for Gov. Nathan Deal said that Deal “moved aggressively” to lower the cost of the tolls and give a grace period to toll violators, which explains some of the revenue gap, the AJC reported.

One year later, what do you think of the I-85 HOT lanes? Tell us in the comments below.

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