The ParkingZone is Headquartered near the Portland Metro area, so when there is buzz around new construction and regulations, the ParkingZone is quick to learn about trends and potential changes in the area. As of recent, Portland’s government has been debating the addition of tolls on the major interstate freeways around the Portland metropolitan area. Joe Cortright of Streetsblog USA, an online transit and pedestrian commuting blog, highlights the rationalization and potential upsides to a higher toll during peak hours or a peak-hour only toll.
Could this be the new normal for many downtown areas around the country?Could this solve the expansion of a under-developed freeway and roadway infrastructure in Portland or other cities suffering from similar issues? Join the ParkingZone to find out more!
One of the key components behind higher tolls during peak hours is that they can possibly eliminate the need for off-peak tolls. Joe goes into detail about how the argument of a peak-hour commuting minimum-wage worker finding tolls stressful and restrictive is actually contradicting with the statistics provided by the Integrated Public Use Microdata Series’, or IPUMS, website. This data represents a sample of all Portland metro area adults 18 and older from the years 2011 to 2015.
This data gathered not only shows that people who commute into the downtown Portland area using their own vehicles earn a higher median income than those who use transit or self-powered transportation by as much as 75%, but those who travel by car during the peak congestion hours have an even higher median income compared to those using alternative methods during the same hours by as much as 20%.
Joe believes passing the majority of the of the responsibility onto those who place the highest demand on the roadways during peak hours, is an equal way of distributing the cost of maintaining the local roads and interstate freeways. This allows for the tolling of interstate freeways as well as lessening the burden on low-income workers. Seemingly, this could be a solution to Portland’s worsening traffic situation.
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Original Article Posted by Joe Cortright on Streetsblog USA: