Gross toll revenue from the I-405 express toll lanes was far more than what the state originally predicted.
As KIRO Radio’s Chris Sullivan reported Tuesday, the tolls generated $17.5 million gross toll revenue during the first year of operation. Initial projections were $5.5 million.
Total gross revenue for the highway was $21.6 million. That revenue includes income from sales of Good to Go passes, fees and penalties.
Drivers took 10.1 million trips in the toll lanes since they opened in September.
By law, revenue after expenses must be put back into improvements on I-405. According to the state, about 60 percent of revenue will go back to the roadway. The rest is split between toll system operations and maintenance (5 percent); state operations (11 percent); customer service and billing (9 percent); and “miscellaneous” (15 percent).
Operating costs for the interstate were about $8 million.
That should be good news to drivers who frequent I-405. The state has promised to tackle the daily congestion people are experiencing, even after the addition of the toll lanes.
Recently, the Washington State Department of Transportation awarded the contract to add hard-shoulder driving to a stretch of the interstate.
Additionally, the long-term plan for I-405 calls for rebuilding the SR 522 interchange and adding more lanes to create a dual express toll lane system that extends to I-5.
Tolling Director Kim Henry recently said the continuing population growth is at least partially to blame for the ongoing congestion along sections of I-405.