FDOT Talks I-4 Toll Lanes in Orlando by 2020
March 04, 2013 | WMFE - Florida Department of Transportation Secretary Ananth Prasad was in Orlando Monday to discuss the planned addition of toll lanes to I-4.
[Image: Artist's rendering of I-4 through downtown after construction is completed on new toll lanes]
Prasad says the project will add four so-called “managed lanes” to a 21-mile stretch of I-4, from Kirkman Road to State Road 434 in the Longwood area. Six toll-free lanes will remain.
According to Prasad, the toll prices will be higher during heavy congestion, and lower when traffic is light.
“We use tolls to only keep a certain number of people in the managed lanes so we can keep them going at 50 miles an hour," says Prasad. "Say if I-4 ‘general purpose’ lanes – the toll-free lanes – are congested and you only charge a quarter, everybody’s going to be on it, and now you got another two lanes of gridlock. So what you do is, you use tolls as a way to manage capacity coming in to the express lanes.”
Prasad says a similar project is working successfully on I-95 in south Florida. The state expects to cover less than half of the $2.1 billion cost. Transportation officials say they’re courting private partners to cover the difference. The I-4 toll lanes are expected to be completed in 2020.