When the 495 Express Lanes open at the end of this year, Virginia Beltway drivers will have more control over how and when they get to their destination. Don’t spend another minute anguishing in gridlock traffic this winter when there’s another option available.
Construction of the 495 Express Lanes is over 95 percent complete, and drivers will soon be able to enjoy faster travel on I-495 from the Springfield Interchange to just north of the Dulles Toll Road. But before you take the 495 Express Lanes, it’s important to understand how they will work and make sure you have an E-ZPass®.
To keep traffic moving at free flowing speeds, all drivers will need an E-ZPass to use the Express Lanes – there are no toll booths or options to pay cash. Carpoolers will need the new E-ZPass Flex to ensure a toll-free trip on the Express Lanes.
The E-ZPass Flex allows drivers to select toll-paying or HOV mode by sliding a switch on the bottom of the device. The E-ZPass Flex can be used to pay tolls on any facility that accepts E-ZPass, regardless of the position of the switch.
Toll-paying drivers can use a regular E-ZPass or the new Flex set to toll-paying mode to pay their toll electronically at highway speed.
Tolls for the Express Lanes will be dynamic, meaning they will change periodically based on real-time traffic conditions to keep the lanes free flowing. Toll rates will be displayed on electronic message signs in advance of each entrance to the Express Lanes and drivers will have ample time to decide whether to take the Express Lanes or use the regular Beltway lanes.
The Express Lanes will be easy to use and help drivers get where they need to go. However, there are some new aspects of the road that everyone should know before getting in the car and trying the new route. Drivers should prepare to use the lanes by learning the access and exit points along the Express Lanes, making sure they know how to read on-road signage and reviewing the new traffic patterns that will be present inside the Express Lanes.
Been putting off getting your E-ZPass? Now’s the time to get your E-ZPass, start planning your Express Lanes route and make sure you’ll be prepared to safely use the new option on I-495.
To learn more about the E-ZPass and E-ZPass Flex, visit www.495expresslanes.com/using-ezpass.
To learn how you can safely take advantage of the new time-saving option opening soon, www.495expresslanes.com/using-the-lanes.