Crews to start removing double white line along Highway 167 toll lanes

State crews will start Sunday, Aug. 10 to remove the double white line along Highway 167 for easier access to the toll lane. - ROSS COYLE, Kent Reporter
State crews will start Sunday, Aug. 10 to remove the double white line along Highway 167 for easier access to the toll lane.
— image credit: ROSS COYLE, Kent Reporter

Crews will start work on Sunday, Aug. 10 to remove the double white line for easier access to the high occupancy toll (HOT) lanes along Highway 167 in Kent, Auburn and Renton.

The state Department of Transportation (DOT) will change the double white stripes to one white stripe to allow drivers easier access to move in and out of the HOT lanes where they want rather than the limited access and exit points with the two stripes. The highway features a single toll lane for about 10 miles northbound and southbound between Renton and Auburn.

Drivers will see just one stripe and be able to enter and exit the HOT lanes nearly anywhere along the corridor, according to a state DOT media release. The HOT lanes will still be open to solo drivers with a Good To Go! pass and free to carpools, transit, vanpools and motorcycles.

Crews will begin at the south end of the northbound lanes in Auburn and work its way north. Once the northbound work is complete, crews will switch over to the north end of the southbound lanes in Renton and work their way south.

Construction is scheduled Sunday through Thursday nights, with striping during the week of Aug. 10-14 and sign removal and installation on Aug. 17-21.

A federal grant of $520,000 will pay for the redesign.

A University of Washington study for the state showed people violated crossing the double stripes to get into the lane because of traffic congestion. Drivers had to wait for gaps in traffic and access points were not convenient to reach exits.

Double stripes will be kept in certain areas to prevent heavy weaving and at the ends of the systems so drivers don't cut late into the HOT lane ahead of those already in the toll lane. The ticket is $124 for illegally crossing the double lines.

Tolls for the HOT lane range from 50 cents up to $9, depending on traffic. Solo drivers must have a Good To Go pass and pay a single toll to drive any distance along the 10-mile corridor. Vehicles with two or more occupants can use the lane for free as can buses and motorcycles. Electronic signs indicate the toll rate at entry points.

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