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January toll hike on Dulles Toll Road might be last for a while

Thursday - 10/24/2013, 11:55am  ET

silverline90.jpg
One of five new Silver Line stations will open early next year. (WTOP/Hank Silverberg)

TYSONS, Va - Tolls are scheduled to go up again on the Dulles Toll Road in January. But it appears that may be the last toll hike for that road in the near future.

The 75-cent hike is part of the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority's financing plan for the nearly $6 billion Metro expansion known as the Silver Line.

Phase one of the project is nearly complete.

"We're shooting for a November substantial completion. Obviously there is still work we have to do before then," says authority spokesman Chris Paolino.

Revenue on the toll road is up 24 percent so far this year. Traffic has decreased only 1.5 percent after the toll hikes -- much lower than what had been expected. That means -- at least for now -- no additional toll hikes will be necessary, says Rob Yingling, another spokesman.

The Virginia General Assembly allocated more than $300 million during the 2013 session to keep the toll rates down.

The tolls will go up to $3.50 in January for the full length of the highway. Paolino says MWAA is also moving ahead with phase two of the Silver Line that will eventually go to Dulles International Airport and two stops beyond. Survey work and other planning is underway, and construction is scheduled to begin next year.

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Editor's note: A previous version of this story incorrectly identified the number of stops the Silver Line would go past the airport. We regret the error.

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