Next Steps as Congestion Pricing Program Clears Final Federal Hurdle
Manhattan’s congestion pricing program is inching closer to becoming a reality. Recently the program to be operated under the umbrella of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) cleared final federal approvals; and pending future roadblocks, could be operational as soon as April 2024. Items that remain pending include final decisions and approvals of toll costs, with the six-member Traffic Mobility Review Board being tasked with developing a recommended “toll package that will generate at least $1 billion in annual revenue, but the MTA board has the final approval on pricing decisions. In the meantime, the public will have one more period of opportunity to provide comments on the proposed tolling plan before the final vote and plan adoption. TransCore has designed, and will build and operate, the new tolling infrastructure that will work similarly to E-ZPass and look similar to existing traffic equipment already in place on the city’s streets. While anticipated lawsuits from multiple opponents could potentially delay or block congestion pricing, MTA chairman and chief executive Janno Lieber believes its extensive 4,000-word environmental assessment document of the tolling plan will stand up to scrutiny.