The Metropolitan Transportation Authority launched a pilot program that will test both gateless and cashless all-electronic tolling at the Henry Hudson Bridge. MTA Chairman Jay H. Walder, along with several key officials, held a ceremony on the Bronx-bound plaza to remove the first padded, aluminum gate arm from a bridge tollbooth. Gateless operations began Thnursday, with all-electronic tolling scheduled to begin at the facility in 2012.
“There’s a better way to collect tolls in the 21st century, and it’s called all-electronic tolling,” Walder said. “By removing the gate arms today we begin the process of ushering in this new era in toll collection. If all goes according to plan, by next year the Henry Hudson Bridge will be the first cashless bridge in the country, reducing travel times for drivers and expenses for the MTA.”
A decision on whether to expand either the gateless or cashless operations at other MTA crossings will be made after the pilot has ended. Currently Denver, Texas and Florida operate cashless systems in a highway environment. In the New York region, several tolling authorities operate mixed cash and electronic systems but none are totally cashless.
Three gateless E-ZPass Only and three Cash Only lanes will be available in each direction. During the gateless phase of the pilot, new state-of-the-art cameras that are positioned within the existing toll plaza configuration and back office operations will be tested.