Implications for the United States
Edited by Harry W. Richardson and Chang-Hee Christine Bae
Chapter 18: Expansion of Toll Lanes or More Free Lanes? A Case Study of SR91 in Southern California
Harry W. Richardson, Peter Gordon, James E. Moore II, Sungbin Cho and Qisheng Pan 1 INTRODUCTION The research reported here builds on our earlier work modeling the regional economic impacts of highway and other infrastructure projects. We are particularly interested in treating the full eﬀects of highway capacity gains and losses, and this application elaborates this work in two important directions. First, we have extended our modeling capability to include highway lanes that are tolled. Second, we apply the new model to an important prototype application, the originally private, now public, lanes in the median of a 10-mile segment of California State Route (SR) 91. The possible widening of this route with additional tolled or generalpurpose lanes has been the subject of considerable controversy. A noncompete provision in the franchise awarded to the California Private Transportation Company (CPTC) had stood in the way of public agencies’ eﬀorts to provide additional capacity in the corridor. Our approach sheds light on such controversies and, thereby, may reduce political conﬂict and misunderstanding. We also show that, whereas congestion tolls are widely presumed to be eﬃcient, the eﬃciency outcomes are complex when only a part of the network is tolled. 2 CALIFORNIA SR91 EXPRESS LANES The SR91 express lanes were California’s ﬁrst private toll highway project, which was developed under enabling legislation passed by the California legislature in 1989. A franchise was eventually awarded to the CPTC who ﬁnanced, built and operated two tolled lanes in each direction along...
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