Nov.15 marked the end of an era on Miami-Dade Expressway Authority (MDX) expressways. The last remaining cash plazas on State Roads (SR) 836 and 112 closed on Nov. 14, and at midnight on the morning of Nov. 15 the agency’s longterm transition to all electronic tolling was completed.
In 2006, MDX adopted an Open Road Tolling (ORT) Master Plan that would implement all electronic tolling on the five expressways that MDX operates and maintains: SR 924/Gratigny Parkway, SR112/Airport Expressway, SR 836/Dolphin Expressway, SR 874/Don Shula Expressway and SR 878/Snapper Creek Expressway.
Three of the expressways converted to ORT in 2010, but the MDX Board of Directors twice delayed making the change on SR 836 and SR 112 due to the economic downturn.
The new ORT toll rate on SR 836 under ORT will be 70 cents on a mainline gantry and 30 cents on tolled ramps. The toll rate on SR 112 will be 35 cents on a mainline gantry and there are no ramp tolls.
“Not everyone who uses the expressway pays a toll. About 55 percent of the users pay a toll. This small group is funding 100 percent of the improvements to the roadway,” said Mario Diaz, public information manager for MDX. “ORT enables MDX to equitably fund the system by ensuring that users pay only their fair share for the portion of the expressway that they use.”
MDX is funded primarily by toll revenue collected from drivers of the toll roads and does not receive gas tax or other state or federal funding. MDX, as a local state agency, was created to ensure that tolls collected in Miami-Dade County stay in the county and are reinvested locally to improve mobility.
Prior to the creation of MDX, these expressways were under the jurisdiction of Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) and tolls collected locally would be sent to Tallahassee and redistributed, with no guarantee as to how much would be reinvested back in Miami-Dade County.
Since its start, MDX has invested more than $1.2 billion in safety enhancements, capacity and operational improvements on its roadways. The current MDX work program of $880 million is estimated to yield a $1.5 billion impact to the local economy and deliver more than 10,400 direct and indirect jobs.
For more information on MDX, visit www.mdxway.com.