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I-495 Express Lanes on track to open early in Va.

Wednesday - 10/31/2012, 4:02pm  ET

SPRINGFIELD, Va. (AP) - The Virginia Department of Transportation says the multi-billion dollar 495 Express Lanes project is on track to open earlier than expected.

Officials said Wednesday the high-occupancy toll lanes could open as soon as Nov. 17 on the Capital Beltway. To use the lanes, drivers will need an E-Z Pass to pay the tolls. There are no toll booths.

Officials are encouraging drivers to prepare ahead of time to learn how the lanes work.

Two new toll lanes will run in each direction from the Springfield Interchange to the Dulles Toll Road in Virginia. The toll lanes will operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Pricing will change based on traffic conditions to keep the lanes moving.

The project was expected to conclude by the end of the year.

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