YORK COUNTY, Pa. -- A big change is coming to the Pennsylvania Turnpike.
The PA Turnpike tolling system will be completely cashless within the next two years, by the fall of 2021. Once the change is implemented, in-lane or onsite payment will no longer be accepted anywhere along the 552-mile tollway. The $129 million project will cause 600 turnpike employees to lose their jobs.
“We recognize that customers pay a premium to travel the Turnpike, and for that reason we are continually reviewing the safety and efficiency of our system,” said PTC CEO Mark Compton. “Nine years ago, we undertook an AET feasibility study at a time when E-ZPass users were at around 60 percent. Today, our studies and pilot conversions have been completed and now more than 80 percent of our travelers prefer E-ZPass.”
When this cashless conversion is complete, drivers who had been accustomed to paying their tolls with cash or credit will instead receive a PA Turnpike TOLL BY PLATE bill by mail. A photo of the license plate will be taken, and a bill be mailed to the vehicle’s owner. Drivers with E-ZPass will pay as usual.
Compton said despite the 2021 conversion date, Turnpike Commissioners remain committed to no layoffs prior to Jan. 1, 2022. Collectors will staff toll plazas to offer guidance and aid to customers during this familiarization period.
The entire project is expected to be complete by 2026.