For the first time, CBS46 drives the new Northwest Express toll lanes. Thirty miles of new lanes opened to drivers with a Peach Pass on Saturday.
“It will give you that reliable trip time so you know exactly what you are buying,” GDOT spokesperson Natalie Dale said. “So you either pay with your time in the general purpose lane during rush hour or you can pay the toll by using the express lane system.”
The lanes run southbound along I-75 towards Atlanta during morning rush hour. Midday HERO units will check and clear lanes of any stalled vehicles or debris. Then the lanes switch northbound for the evening commute.
With safety in mind, there is a shoulder drivers can pull off on if they break down and other dedicated pull off areas. Fire, police, and other emergency personnel have been trained on how to operate in the lanes.
“There are nine emergency access vehicle points where they can access the system to gain quick to an accident in the system,” Dale said.
CBS46 questioned GDOT about the wall collapse that happened back in June and changes made since then. We learned an independent contractor was brought in to examine the situation and repairs were made on 14 different sections.
“We looked at every single wall that was built that way and applied the retro fit to it to ensure safety throughout the system,” Dale said. “So what you have again with that retro fit is the soil nail really connecting the fascia panel which you see here which is just an aesthetic facade to the back part.”
The lanes will be free for Peach Pass users for 14 day. Once tolls go into effect pricing will be based on lane usage. The more people using the lanes the higher the toll price. Click here for more informationCopyright 2018 WGCL-TV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.