6/06/2008

Study Looks at Tolling Downtown Austin Bridges

A UT Department of Civil Engineering study takes a close look at the revenue generation rewards of toll taxing a number of existing downtown Austin bridges — including the popular Congress bridge and others. As stated in the study:

"The bridges identified for tolling are those at Redbud Trail, Loop 1, Lamar Boulevard, Congress Avenue, and South First Street, henceforth referred as “Bridge Toll Candidates”..."
Professor Kara M. Kockelman, Ph.D., P.E., is noted as a corresponding author in the study (find other toll studies in the last link). The UT department receives funding directly from TxDOT and looks at several ways (including fixed and congestion pricing) to collect a hefty toll tax from existing downtown Austin bridges.:
"Fixed tolls ranging from $1 to $5 were applied between 7:15 am and 6:15 pm on all links entering the cordon"
Congestion pricing is simple.

When the toll is high at peak driving times, some people are forced out of their cars, so there are less cars jamming up traffic. Congestion pricing is an unaccountable tax that unfairly punishes the non-elite.


Gov. Rick Perry, Sen. Kirk Watson and other elites/tollers will tell you and your family to just take the bus.

12 comments:

Anonymous said...

This is horrible. It's bad enough to toll an existing highway but local streets? Get out and vote for Laura Morrison today! Do something!

Anonymous said...

Git a rope!

Anonymous said...

I swear, if this shit starts to take hold, I'm leaving! This is insane. My husband works in an industry that is in high demand across the country, and with real estate still doing fairly well in Austin, I have no doubt I could sell my home for a good profit and move elsewhere. These local government officials and private industry money-grubbing thieves can kiss my ass. I don't need their grubby paws in my wallet!

Anonymous said...

I would love to see the trolling consortium try to implement this and awaken the vast majority, sleeping populace so we could witness revolt against the hypocritcal incumbent trollers. Even the American Statesmen appears to be treading lightly of late sensing monumental constituency backlash.

Anonymous said...

I sit here on the anniversary of D-Day and am ashamed that we have allowed our country to "devolve" to its current state. I really don't know what else to say.

Anonymous said...

this studied scenario will never happen.

Dr. Kockelman has published many valid studies on transportation topics. She is just trying to find some answers.

Her scholarship -- if you look at all of it in context -- actually tends to show that the current TxDOT toll road planning won't work as advertised. So I think she is independent, & truly has no ax to grind.

she does seem to think that some kind of pricing might help with congestion. but that is taken from a strictly academic perspective, it doesn't take account of the fact that the public despises it.

politically, tolling existing stuff is not too likely -- unless it is somehow tied to a major new construction project they tell people they can't get funded any other way, like CAMPO's six tolled upgrades to existing roads.

Anonymous said...

Perry and Watson should be tied together and subjected to horrific experimental torture techniques.

Sal Costello Sal@TexasTollParty.com said...

A lot of people said Sen. Kirk Watson and CAMPO wouldn't vote to divert nearly $1 Billion tax dollars, and right of way we've paid for, to shift our local freeways to tollways, but they did last October.

See my post from 5/30/2008 to see the map.

Anonymous said...

Response to Anon: 2:28pm -

I had no idea the Austin American Statesman was cooling towards the idea of tolling...However, the Statesman would be directly affected by tolls collected on the Congress Bridge...(as well as other bridges into the downtown area.)

Funny that they are not going to advocate an idea that so directly affects their business and personnel. It's like, "It's fine as long as it's not in my backyard!"

Anonymous said...

With the omenous reactions of the Sunset Commission against TxDOT, I've noted a slight change lately by the Austin American Statesman in its biased pro-toll reporting for transportation. Its staff may be finally realizing the angst of the vast majority grass roots against mis-/disinformation promulgaters of Perry's false TTC/tolling visions.

Sal Costello Sal@TexasTollParty.com said...

Here is why you CAN'T TRUST The SNAKESMAN!!!:

http://tinyurl.com/3wc3c6

Anonymous said...

(Reply from 7:00 PM, June 07, 2008) In no way was I suggesting nor do I trust the American Snakesman -- quite the opposite. Unfortunately, it's the major local print media that must be dealt with, just like a cornered rat that I now sense squirming in its guilt. The Snakesman's (transportation) word has proven quite untrustworthy and its staff might be beginning to see the errors of its past that guides its readership to fade with the Sunset (until another directional wind change).