Related News

Home » Metro » Public Services

High-tech e-toll system stuck in first gear

ONLY 5,000 electronic toll payments have been collected since the high-tech system was launched in January.

Shanghai's motorists have been able to pay tolls electronically at 30 percent of toll booths in the city since the start of the year using prepaid accounts.

However, traffic authorities said response to the system had been lackluster. They suspected the 430-yuan (US$63) cost of the toll scanner was too high for many motorists.

Drivers agreed. "An onboard unit costs 430 yuan. For that price, it really has to prove itself cost-efficient before we can be willing to buy it," said one car owner. "The queues at toll gates haven't been reduced much by the new system, especially during rush hours."

At present, most of the toll gates fitted with the e-toll system can also be used by drivers paying cash, which means even vehicles equipped with e-toll often have to wait. There are 80 lanes fitted with the e-toll system at 30 toll stations in Shanghai, but only 16 of the lanes are reserved for vehicles paying tolls electronically.

Officials said they expected waiting times to show a clear improvement when 30 to 40 percent of regular road users have the system installed.

Given the slow uptake of the system, mixed toll lanes will be necessary in order to ensure service capacity for ordinary vehicles, said officials with the city's highway administration.

They said they would continue to open more e-toll lanes on local expressways - both mixed-function and exclusive-use lanes.

They aim to have all the city's nearly 100 toll stations fitted with some e-toll lanes by 2010.

Shanghai aims to have 300,000 city vehicles using the new system within the next four years.

Currently, only 2,000 local car owners have e-toll payers installed.


Copyright © 1999- Shanghai Daily. All rights reserved.Preferably viewed with Internet Explorer 8 or newer browsers.

沪公网安备 31010602000204号

Email this to your friend