A $636 million dollar toll road running from Route 1 to the Delaware-Maryland line opened to traffic Thursday.
The Route 301 toll road is almost 14-miles long and uses the new All Electronic Tolling system.
“This will be Delaware’s first All Electronic Tolling system - No tolls booths - NO toll plazas there. So, NO cash payments will be accepted on the road. So what will happen is, for motorists that currently have E-ZPass it will be just like driving through Route 1 or I-95 like you usually do,” said Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) communications director C.R. McLeod.
McLeod explains for motorists who do not have E-ZPass, the road has a Toll-By-Plate system. That system takes a picture of a vehicle's license plate as it passes through the toll gantry and that's used to send a bill for the toll and a small administrative charge by mail.
He says bills must be paid with 30 days, or are additional fees incurred. The toll for cars, vans and SUV’s using full bypass is $4 for E-ZPass and $5.60 for toll-by-plate. Trucks pay more based on the number of axels.
McLeod says it’s hoped the Route 301 toll road will improve safety and relieve truck-traffic congestion in the Middletown Corridor by as much as 20%.
“Really what the purpose of the project will ultimately be is to improve safety and relieve congestion in the Middle Corridor. We all know that Middletown has seen tremendous growth over the past 20 years. We’re also seeing growing truck-traffic volume. And what the new 301 will do is, take that truck-traffic off those local roads,” McLeod said.
It took nearly 3 years to build the road.
The speed limit on it will be 65 miles an hour.