Dartmouth, NS – Earlier today, the Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board (NSUARB) approved Halifax Harbour Bridges’ (HHB) application for a toll increase. The increase will come into effect April 1, 2011.
The increases will be as follows:
§ $0.25 per crossing for cash customers ($0.75 to $1)
§ An increase of an average of $0.34 per axle for commercial vehicles using cash
§ The increase to MACPASS will be implemented in two steps:
§ For regular passenger cars using MACPASS.
o $.10 increase effective April 1, 2011 – $.60 to $.70
o $.10 increase effective April 1, 2012 – $.70 to $.80
§ For commercial vehicles using MACPASS, two equal increases per axle: the first effective April 1, 2011 and the second effective April 1, 2012
There will be no change to fares for buses including Access-A-Bus vehicles
“We are pleased that the NSUARB recognizes that a toll increase is necessary for the long term maintenance of the bridges,” explains Steve Snider, general manager and CEO.
HHB submitted an application requesting a toll increase in July 2010. Hearings were held November 22, 2010.
The last time tolls increased for passenger cars was in 1992 when the cash fare went from $0.50 to $0.75. “Since the last toll adjustment HHB has experienced steady increases in its volume of traffic and a decrease in its interest rates which have positively affected its financing costs. This allowed us to postpone toll increases until now,” explains Snider.
Under the Halifax-Dartmouth Bridge Commission Act HHB is considered a public utility. As such it is required to apply to the NSUARB to make any changes to the toll structure.
“For people still using cash to cross the harbour we recommend switching to MACPASS because it is less expensive than using cash,” says Snider. “MACPASS for passenger cars will cost $.30 less than cash will be. It’s less expensive, faster and better for the environment.”
HHB’s mission is to provide safe, efficient and reliable passage at an appropriate cost.