This morning, the variable toll on the southbound I-85 High-Occupancy Toll (HOT) lanes went up to a new all time high… $6.35 for driving the entire length. Here’s the story from Atlanta’s WSB-TV….
Have you ever heard the saying “There’s a sucker born every minute”? These so-called “Lexus Lanes” make me want to add the additional phrase “… and fleeced by the mile”.
Why anyone would want to pay to use these formerly-free lanes is still beyond me, but then again, it’s your choice to use or not to use them. My main problem with them is that these lanes, which were built using taxpayer dollars, were taken away from us. If they were new lanes, such as the newly-opened I-495 Express Lanes in Virginia, then I would’ve given the idea more support.
Regretfully, Georgia’s I-85 HOT Lanes are here to stay. However, it is my hope that we can pull together and keep the Georgia DOT (GDOT) and State Road and Tollway Authority from converting the remainder of the High-Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes or any other lanes taxpayers already paid for.
So when will the toll hit $7.00? I wouldn’t be surprised if that happened soon. Regardless of the toll amount, I won’t be riding them anytime soon. If nothing else, it’s not part of my daily commute. US 19/GA 400, on the other hand, is part of my daily commute to-and-from my “real job” and I hope that GDOT and SRTA keeps the non-tolled section totally free… period.