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CRC Tolls will be $8 to $16 round trip!

March 27, 2013

Tolls are Planned to be $2000 per Year for Commuters

Chapter 4 of The Interstate 5 Columbia River Crossing Project Final Environmental Impact Statement contains financial data including tolling scenarios. Exhibit 4.33, Toll Rate Schedule Scenarios – Toll Rates In Each Direction, shows three toll rate scenarios called Schedule 1, Schedule 2, and Schedule 3. Page 4-19 contains the following statement:

Given the baseline financial assumptions used in this FEIS, finance  plan scenarios based on either the Base (Schedule 1) or Schedule 2 toll rates  do not appear to be viable. The finance plan scenario shown assumes Toll Rate  Schedule 3 and employs its entire borrowing capacity. It employs 3 years of precompletion tolling on a cash basis and a small amount of residual toll revenues. (Emphasis added)

Therefore it is appropriate to use the tolling data from Schedule 3 which shows a $3.00 toll from 6-10 am and 3-7 pm. This must be adjusted per footnote a of Exhibit 4.33:

Toll rates are shown in 2006 dollars. Toll rates are assumed to escalate at 2.5% per year.

If the bridge opens in 2019, at 2.5% per year increase, that $3 toll becomes $4.14 each way or $8.28 per day for commuters.

$8.28 per day is $2000 per year.

With yearly increases that becomes $3000 per year just 15 years after opening.

Calculations:

3 x 1.025^13 = $4.14

4.14 x 2 = $8.27

8.27 x 250 = $2068

2068 x 1.025^15 = $2995

Note:

1.025^13 = 1.378511

1.025^15 = 1.448298

 But Tolls might reach $4000 per Year for Commuters!

The Columbia River Crossing Project ANNUAL SECTION 5309 NEW STARTS REPORT CAPITAL AND OPERATING FINANCE PLAN September 2011 created by the CRC for the FTA in compliance with annual New Starts reporting requirements contains this statement on pdf page 43:

2.5.2.4 Adapt Tolling to Different Circumstances if required to Rebalance the Funding Plan

Toll rates can be adjusted within reasonable amounts if additional funding capacity is required. Tolling analyses found that gross toll revenues can be increased by raising toll rates up to almost $6.00 (2006$) each way, after which the diversion impacts of higher rates exceeds the added revenues the higher rates produce. Toll rates that high are not being proposed. However, the analysis demonstrates that an increased toll rate schedule can produce additional funding capacity, if that was required.

Again, adjusting that $6 toll from 2006 dollars to day of opening we get $8.28 each way, or $16.56/round trip, which is $4140 per year for commuters.

With yearly increases that becomes $6000 per year just 15 years after opening.

Calculations:

$6 x 1.025^13 = $8.27

$8.27 x 2 = $16.54

$16.54 x 250 = $4136

$4136 x 1.025^15 = $5989

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