The Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s (MTA) Triborough Bridges and Tunnels (TBTA) affiliate agency has selected TransCore to implement New York City’s new congestion charging program in the Central Business District (CBD).
TransCore will design, build, operate and maintain the toll system equipment and infrastructure required to run NYC’s first-of-its-kind Central Business District Tolling Program (CBDTP). The announcement comes just six months after the Governor and the legislature adopted the MTA Reform and Traffic Mobility Act, legislation empowering TBTA to reduce congestion and enhance mobility in the CBD. The TBTA will work closely with TransCore and the NYC’s Department of Transportation (NYCDOT) to install the toll system and infrastructure that will reduce congestion and allow TBTA to generate net revenue sufficient to fund US$15bn for the historic MTA 2020-2024 Capital Plan, with the new income spent on mass transit improvements. NYC is the first in North America to have a CBD Tolling Program, which is expected to roll out in 2021.
The program aims to reduce congestion in the Manhattan CBD, where data shows that between 2010 and 2018 average travel speeds have decreased from 9.1mph to 7mph, a decline of 23%. TransCore, which was selected after a competitive procurement process that featured proposals from two other vendors, will now move forward with the preliminary design phase of this transformative project. The company is expected to make use of the high E-ZPass market share in the New York metropolitan region as well as the East Coast and the Midwest. The toll system equipment will be mounted on infrastructure similar to mast arms and poles already seen throughout the city so as to have a minimal footprint and fit within existing streetscapes.
While the toll structure has not yet been defined, the law requires exemptions for qualifying emergency vehicles and qualifying vehicles transporting people with disabilities. There will also be a tax credit for tolls incurred by residents living in the Manhattan CBD earning less than US$60,000 a year. After the early design phase is complete, TransCore will begin building the infrastructure and installing the toll system equipment. Once operational, the company will continue to be responsible for operating and maintaining the infrastructure and toll system for an additional six years. The contract envisions a future-ready system, which allows for new equipment to be incorporated as technologies advance. The total cost of this design, build, operate and maintain contract is US$507m, which includes incentive payments to encourage on-time delivery.
“This marks a major milestone for the MTA’s first-of-its-kind Central Business District Tolling Program and will reduce congestion on crowded city streets while providing billions in essential funding to transform our transportation system for generations to come,” said Patrick J Foye, the MTA’s chairman and CEO. “This nation-leading program brings us one step closer to making New York a more environmentally sustainable and economically vibrant city. Quite simply, it makes New York City a better place to live, work, and visit. I look forward to working closely with leadership at TransCore and New York City DOT as we move full speed ahead to make CBDTP fully operational in 2021.”