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December 30, 2011 at 4:01 PM

Traffic on 520 stays way, way down

Only 44,300 vehicles crossed the Highway 520 floating bridge Thursday, the first day of new tolls on the aging span.

That’s about 60 percent less than the 115,000 who make the trip on a typical weekday, according to the latest numbers released by the state today.

But on toll-free Interstate-90 and Highway 522, traffic was close to a normal, non-holiday level — clear evidence that maybe 40,000 or so drivers diverted from paying on 520, said Craig Stone, toll director for the state DOT.

On Friday morning, traffic on 520 fell another tenth, so the trend could mean 4,000 fewer cars for the day compared to Thursday.

Stone urged travelers to prepare for a more volatile commute this coming Tuesday, for instance, by registering their vanpools to use 520 toll-free. Toll rates range from free overnight to $3.50 each way at peak times.

Comments | More in Traffic & Transit | Topics: 520 bridge, Interstate 90, numbers

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