Climbers on George Washington Bridge snarl traffic

Westchester commuters, residents weigh in on official congestion pricing rollout date

The new $15 tolls will begin in just about two months at midnight on Sunday, June 30.

Jonathan Gordon

Apr 26, 2024, 11:45 PM

Updated 21 days ago


The Metropolitan Transportation Authority announced the official start date for its controversial congestion pricing plan on Friday.
The news came as a surprise to some who were expecting the tolling to begin later this year.
"I would not drive downtown if they're going to increase the prices," Maria Rodriguez said.
"It'll be too much but it is what it is," Gerry Ceja added.
Tolls will vary for drivers depending on the time they go below 60th Street in Manhattan, the size of their vehicle or if they qualify for any exemptions.
The New York State Legislature approved the parameters of the plan back in 2019.
Supporters said it is expected to raise $1 billion in much-needed revenue to fund public transportation, limit traffic and reduce the amount of pollutants in our environment.
Opponents called it a burden for commuters and worried it would increase the cost of goods and services crossing through lower Manhattan.
"I just think that it's ridiculous. I mean what are people going to do?" Stew Badie asked. "Even if you just want to go into the city and spend money it's now going to cost you extra."
While the official launch date is a major milestone in the process it far from guarantees a mid-summer start date for the program. Small businesses as well as the state of New Jersey have filed lawsuits against the MTA to stop it from happening.
Communities west of the Hudson River, including Rockland County, which does not have a direct ride into Manhattan, have also opposed the plan. They've called it unfair to charge people who live in the Hudson Valley any extra for working in lower Manhattan when a one-seat ride isn't available.

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