2012-08-24: Most toll rates on the 120 mile Houston area toll system operated by Harris County Toll Road Authority (HCTRA) are rising September 8. Mainline toll rates with the EZ TAG transponders will got up a dime to $1.40 (about 8% higher) while cash toll rates go up a quarter from $1.50 to $1.75 (a 17% increase) for cars.
In Houston the ABC franchise KTRK13 has a program called 13 Undercover Investigations with a chatty, gravelly-voiced reporter Wayne Dolcefino who this week did a silly hit job on Harris County tollers in Houston. Dolcefino's 13 Undercover crew found its way into the archives of the Harris County Toll Road Authority (HCTRA) and there they came up with an old brochure from the early 1980s on the Hardy Toll Road and the Sam Houston Tollway then in development.
Harris County Toll Road Authority (HCTRA) which operates six tollroads in the Houston metro area is doing a big toll system upgrade. This is the first complete system upgrade they've done since they first introduced electronic tolling in 1993. Many incremental improvements have been made by inhouse staff and ETC Corp which has been the longtime system integrator to HCTRA.
Five years after it opened the Westpark Tollway in Houston has to have major repairs to remedy drainage problems in depressed segments.
Houston's tollroads are open and busy and carrying large traffic volumes in the aftermath of Hurricane Ike, but there's no early prospect of resuming toll collection. Gary Stobb, spokesman at Harris County Toll Road Authority says he doesn't expect tolls to be collected "until we're a lot closer to normality than we are now."
Harris County Toll Road Authority in Houston told its employees not to report to work at the authority offices Friday or Saturday because the tollroads were shutting down. Tolls have not been collected since before Hurricane Ike, which hit the Houston area late Friday night and through Saturday morning. Toll collection ceased at 7pm (19:00) Sept 10, Wednesday evening to assist with evacuations ordered for the southeast part of the metro area.