AUSTIN — Central Texas toll roads will be ringing in the new year with increased rates.
As announced at the Oct. 31 board of directors meeting for the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority, new rates on the 183A Toll, 290 Toll, 71 Toll Lane and MoPac Express Lane will go into effect on Jan. 1, 2019.
"I feel like it's highway robbery," Austinite Roy Miller said. "I'm not a happy camper about that because I can't even afford to live in the place I grew up in."
He said he already pays hundreds of dollars a year.
"I pay, typically, between $400 and $600 a year," Miller said. "That's with actually knowing when I go around and use the toll roads. Sometimes, you just have to use them."
Consistent with the Consumer Price Index, the 2.27 percent increase will equate to a rise in rates of about one to five cents greater than the current rates at each toll plaza for customers with electronic tags. However, the rate increase on the MoPac Express Lane only applies to the base, or minimum rate.
This extra toll road payment is something Erin Mark said could be avoided.
"It's optional because you don't have to use the toll roads," Mark said.
For those who go the Pay By Mail route, you can expect a rate differential of 50 percent compared to rates paid by tag holders. Customers with electronic tags save about 33 percent more than Pay By Mail customers, according to the Mobility Authority.
Tags that are accepted include:
- Texas Department of Transportation’s TxTag
- Harris County Toll Road Authority’s EZ-TAG
- North Texas Tollway Authority’s TollTag
- Kansas Turnpike Authority’s K-TAG
- Oklahoma Turnpike Authority’s PIKEPASS
New in 2019 in another option to pay discounted toll rates without an electronic tag: Prepaid Registered Accounts. These accounts will allow customers without a tag to have their tolls paid automatically rather than waiting to receive their bills in the mail. For this option, customers can register online or over the phone, add $25 to their registered accounts, and begin traveling on Mobility Authority toll roads hassle-free.
According to the mobility authority, these account holders can receive a 25 percent savings on Pay By Mail toll rates beginning in the new year. Customers without a tag who opt not to sign up for a Prepaid Registered Account can pay their toll bills in person, over the phone, online or by mail.
2019 rates at each toll plaza, electronic tag and Pay By Mail respectively, are listed below:
- Crystal Falls Parkway Ramps: $0.43, $0.65
- Crystal Falls Mainline Plaza: $1.09, $1.64
- Scottsdale Drive Ramp: $0.61, $0.92
- Park Street Mainline Plaza: $1.54, $2.31
- Brushy Creek Ramps: $0.61, $0.92
- Lakeline Mainline Plaza: $0.57, $0.86
- U.S. 183 Ramps (direct connectors): $0.58, $0.87
- Springdale Road Ramps: $0.58, $0.87
- Giles Lane Ramps: $0.58, $0.87
- Giles Lane Mainline Plaza: $1.18, $1.77
- Harris Branch Parkway Ramps: $0.58, $0.87
- Parmer Lane Mainline Plaza: $0.58, $0.87
71 Toll Lane
- FM 973 EB and WB: $0.91, $1.37
MoPac Express Lane
- Northbound - Cesar Chavez to US 183: $0.30, $0.45
- Northbound - Cesar Chavez to Parmer: $0.60, $0.90
- Northbound - RM 2222 to Parmer: $0.30, $0.45
- Southbound - Parmer to RM 2222: $0.30, $0.45
- Southbound - Parmer to 5th/Cesar Chavez: $0.60, $0.90
- Southbound - RM 2222 to 5th/Cesar Chavez: $0.30, $0.45
SH 45 SW
- Bear Creek Plaza: $1.00, $1.50