2013-03-31: Federal permitting of highway projects has reached new levels of absurdity in North Carolina. The Feds have suspended consideration of permits for the southeast extension of NC540 belt route unless North Carolina DOT reinstates studies of a 'Red Route' which by state law it is not allowed to do. Project planning for the southeast extension - a southside part of the 540 belt route around the NC capital - has been on hold for over two years now.
2013-03-28: Operators of the 130 tollroad down the east side of the Austin TX metro area are trying to attract trucks, and they are offering promotional toll rates for a year. The big 18-wheelers and others will only be charged car rates. There have previously been month-long discounts like this. They worked but a TxDOT person told us they think the deep discounting for a longer period will work bette.
2013-03-27: As a small boy I remember the iceman who'd deliver an ice block each day in summer, other times of the year less often. About 15 inches by 10 x 10 an ice block was quite heavy and of course slippery. The iceman used a kind of hook on a handle to grab an ice block from his vehicle and threw it on his shoulder where he perched it on a tailored shoulder pad for the last leg of its delivery. The dog knew him and the place was left open.
2013-03-26: The Golden Gate Bridge toll booths will be empty Wednesday morning by the time you read this - the first time in 75 years of the bridge existence. The plan was that sometime after midnight Tuesday night Pacific time they'd "cut over" to a new all-electronic toll system. The last toll collectors were due to leave their booths for the last cash collection shift in the early minutes of Wednesday. at around 00:01.
Turning 4G mobile phones into multiprotocol transponders - the promise of startup GeoToll with OmniAir's Tim McGuckin CEO
A new product under the brandname GeoToll is about to be launched that promises to turn the newest generation mobile phones ("cell phones") into a multiprotocol toll transponder. OmniAir founder and president Tim McGuckin is leaving the interoperability standards cooperative to run GeoToll as its first chief executive officer. GeoToll will allow a 4G mobile phone to act as a transponder.
Penn Pike Commissioner William Lincoln resigns citing stress of racketeering charges against colleagues
2013-03-22: Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission secretary/treasurer J William Lincoln resigned today citing as reason the "additional personal stress over the events of the past two weeks" and unspecified health problems. The past two weeks saw culmination of a nearly four year grand jury investigation into racketeering at the Turnpike, and a heap of criminal charges against several close colleagues.
2013-03-20: The board of directors of Miami Dade Expressway Authority voted 10 to 3 this Tuesday confirming the seven year old plans to use a move to all-electronic toll collection (AET) to spread toll points over all major segments of their system - full tolling. Under cash collection and roll-through electronic tolling a majority of the links in their system were without tolls.
As many as 75% of trips went untolled.
2013-03-18: Since Cofiroute, the French toller pioneered toll express lanes on the 91 Freeway nearly 20 years in the northeast corner of Orange County California such HOT or toll managed lanes have achieved a great record of success. But even the best ideas can be misapplied or poorly implemented.
Of the people charged by PA Attorney General I really only know Joe Brimmeier. I met him quite a number of times when he was CEO and talked on the telephone more. He's intelligent, capable and fun to be with. I liked the guy.
Penn Pike - eight charged with corruption including ex-chair Rubin, ex-CEO Brimmeier, ex-COO Hatalowich
2013-03-13: The state attorney general Kathleen Kane has filed criminal charges against five former officers of the Pennsylvania Turnpike, two vendors and a former leading Democrat state senator in so-called pay-to-play corruption. This follows nearly four years of a grand jury and police investigations. The attorney general said that a "pay-to-play culture permeated" the turnpike.