UPDATE: There was an emergency meeting of the West Virginia Parkways Authority at its headquarters, 3310 Piedmont Road, Charleston, on Monday, December 31, 2018 at 3:30 p.m., according to Dept. of Highways Spokesman Brent Walker.
During the meeting, the decision was made to delay the toll increase until January 15.
The Parkways Authority will hold another meeting to discuss the issue on January 10.
UPDATE: (WVVA) West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice issued the following statement Monday in response to possible traffic delays and safety issues on the turnpike Tuesday when the new rate hike takes effect.
“I have expressed my deep concerns to the West Virginia Parkways Authority regarding potential traffic delays, backups, and safety on the Turnpike as a result of the planned toll increase on January 1, 2019, and the delay in delivering the transponders in a timely manner. I urge the Parkways Authority to take immediate action and consider delaying implementation of the toll increase until these issues are resolved.”
”All West Virginians should take this opportunity to purchase an E-ZPass and take advantage of this incredible discount. Mountaineers drive nearly for free, apply online now for year-round savings.”
If you’re use to traveling through the West Virginia Turnpike, you can expect some major changes at the toll booths in 2019, and if you miss an early enrollment for an E-ZPass, it could mean paying a few extra bucks at the toll booths!
The West Virginia Parkways Authority voted back in June to double the toll booth rates for the West Virginia Turnpike, increasing from $2 to $4 per toll booth. That means from Princeton to Charleston, passing through 3 toll booths will cost you $12, one way!
That’s too much, that’s crazy,” said Jeff Vanek, a commuter who travels through the Turnpike twice a year.
The Parkways Authority is offering drivers a single fee discount plan for an E-ZPass and you have until Monday to take advantage of it. The E-ZPass is $24, plus a one-time transponder fee for $13, giving you unlimited access through the Turnpike for three years.
If you miss the December 31st deadline, you can purchase an E-ZPass for $25 but it will last you for one year!
So how do drivers feel about coming up with a few extra bucks in 2019 to pass through the Wild and Wonderful West Virginia?
“I think for a lot of people it’s going to make a difference in their travel plans,” said Betsy.”I think of our kids who live in Charlotte and they will visit us in Michigan. Every time they go through the toll, they’re going to have to pay more.”
“I think getting a pass sounds like a great deal,” said Jim. “I think considering the condition of the roads, $4 is reasonable to maintain things.”
“I remember when it was $1.25 at the toll booth,” said Vanek. “I’ll probably just pay the $4.”
For more information about early enrollment for the E-ZPass deal, visit the Parkways Authority website.