News Release, Maryland Transportation Authority
The Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) is taking a number of steps to minimize traffic backups during the $27 million Bay Bridge rehabilitation project to replace the deck surface of the westbound span right lane. The first step is to implement cashless tolling at the Bay Bridge from noon to 10 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays through the duration of the project. With all tolls collected electronically, cash drivers will move through the toll plaza without stopping. Cash drivers will still get the $4 rate and will be sent a statement in the mail. Drivers are encouraged to get a free E-ZPass transponder at ezpassmd.com to simplify toll payments.
On Thursdays and Fridays, only under severe backups and weather permitting, MDTA will implement two-way operations allowing drivers to travel eastbound and westbound on the westbound span at reduced speeds of 25 to 35 mph. Two-way operations will provide three lanes eastbound and one lane westbound for short periods of time to reduce the backups. As we have communicated throughout the summer, drivers should still expect to encounter heavy congestion and delays throughout the project.
MDTA Police will travel the westbound span for enforcement and to help slow vehicles down during two-way operations. The public can help by staying alert, keeping speeds down and maintaining a safe distance. During two-way operations, commercial trucks are not permitted to travel eastbound or westbound on the westbound span due to the narrower lane configuration. As with wind restrictions that prevent trucks from using the Bay Bridge in certain conditions, MDTA will notify truckers when two-way operations are in place.
MDTA officials will work closely with the MDOT Maryland State Highway Administration (MDOT SHA) to monitor traffic throughout the system.
MDOT SHA will continue to dispatch additional CHART vehicles to address any incidents on route 50 and parallel routes. MDTA Police will continue to work with Maryland State Police, Anne Arundel County Police Department and Queen Anne’s County Sheriff’s Office.