I-680 Express Lane to Open Next Friday
MTC today announced that tolling operations for the new 11-mile Express Lane along southbound Interstate 680 from Martinez through Walnut Creek will begin at 5 a.m. on Friday, August 20, 2021. By linking with the existing Express Lane from Rudgear Road in Walnut Creek to Alcosta Blvd. in San Ramon, this will create a continuous 22-mile southbound I-680 Express Lane through Contra Costa County.
The stretch of I-680 from Marina Vista Blvd. in Martinez to Rudgear Road currently operates as a traditional carpool lane. Tolling rules include:
- All vehicles must have a FasTrak® toll tag to use the Express Lanes;
- Carpools with two or more people, vanpools, buses and motorcycles travel toll-free with a FasTrak Flex toll tag set to the 2 or 3+ position;
- Solo drivers of eligible clean-air vehicles (CAVs) pay half-price tolls with a FasTrak CAV toll tag. Eligible CAVs are those with red, purple, orange or blue decals; and
- Other solo drivers pay the full toll to use the Express Lanes with either a standard FasTrak toll tag or a FasTrak Flex tag set to the 1 position.
Operating hours for Express Lanes are weekdays from 5 a.m. to 8 p.m. Tolls rise as traffic increases and fall as traffic declines. Digital signs over the roadway display the toll rates for various destinations. Customers always pay the toll displayed when they enter the Express Lane, even if toll rates change during their trip. Toll-paying customers pay for each toll zone they enter. There are five southbound toll zones from Martinez to San Ramon.
Express Lanes are designed to keep traffic moving reliably without congestion, and to encourage travelers to carpool or use transit to get a free and faster trip. Drivers can visit 511.org to learn everything they need to know to use Bay Area Express Lanes, how to find a carpool match, and how to sign up for FasTrak.