Transurban is a pioneer of the public-private partnership (P3) managed lanes concept in the United States. We serve more than 3.5 million customers in the Greater Washington DC area with the 495 and 95 Express Lanes located on I-495 and I-95 in Virginia, operating since 2012 and 2014 respectively. The Express Lanes network features industry-leading tolling and traffic management systems on more than 40 miles of managed lanes, providing faster travel options in one of the nation’s most congested corridors.
Led by Jennifer Aument, Group General Manager, Transurban North America, the Virginia Express Lanes network is a leading industry model of a successful P3 project in the US. Jennifer and her team at Transurban were among those who pioneered the use of public-private partnerships for major transportation infrastructure in the Virginia and were the first to use a number of innovative financing and technology strategies in the development of major toll road projects, including the $3 billion 495 and 95 Express Lanes in Virginia.
Transurban has long-term agreements with the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) to operate and maintain the 495 and 95 Express Lanes. Transurban holds all revenue risk for the life of the projects, meaning the company and not the state or taxpayer retain the responsibility to finance and maintain and upgrade the roadways regardless of toll revenue.
The US business is currently working with VDOT to extend the 95 Express Lanes to the north and south. The 395 Express Lanes project will extend the 95 Express Lanes network eight miles north to the DC line by converting two existing HOV lanes to three reversible HOT lanes by 2019. Construction is also underway on a two-mile extension to the south on 95, and Transurban is advancing a framework agreement to extend the 95 Express Lanes an additional 10 miles south toward Fredericksburg, Virginia.
The Express Lanes helped address long-standing gridlock in the Greater Washington region by providing a faster travel option for area drivers. During peak periods, traffic speeds on the 95 Express Lanes are on average 40 percent higher than in the adjacent general purpose lanes. The Express Lanes encourage car-pooling and predictable travel times mean transit buses are able to meet their schedules more reliably. Travel times have also improved in the regular lanes as commuters take advantage of the new travel options.
The Express Lanes were delivered with industry leading safety records. Continued safety benefits include active roadway monitoring on the Express Lanes network and maximized throughput on the Express Lanes, while there are fewer accidents and higher travel speeds which improve corridor safety.
Transurban regularly conducts safety programs to minimize dangerous driving behaviours on our roads and across the region. These include campaigns such as Orange Cones. No Phones. during construction season and our “Phones Down” campaigns, which advocate for anti-distracted driving across the region.
The Express Lanes Community Grant Programs are another way Transurban supports the communities in which we operate. The Grant Program was established in 2008, at the beginning of the 495 Express Lanes project. Since then, we have given more than $680,000 to non-profit organizations and communities in Northern Virginia.
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