Local Information

Introducing the Good To Go! Flex Pass and RideshareOnline.com incentive program

Monday, March 23, 2015 - 11:37

Patty Michaud, WSDOT communications, 206-707-1448 (Seattle)

New carpool pass required for toll-free driving on I-405 express toll lanes

BELLEVUE – After more than a decade of planning, the Washington State Department of Transportation introduced the Good To Go! Flex Pass today, reminding drivers that big changes are coming to I-405 between Bellevue and Lynnwood.

Later this year, express toll lanes will open along this 17-mile stretch of highway, providing any driver the choice of a reliable trip by paying a toll. Transit, vanpools and carpools meeting the occupancy requirement will still be able to use the lanes for free.

“Right now, everyone on I-405 is stuck in traffic. Sometimes the HOV lanes are as slow as the regular lanes,” said WSDOT Toll Division Assistant Secretary Craig Stone. “By fall, any drivers on I-405 between Bellevue and Lynnwood will finally have the option to drive 45 miles per hour or faster in the express toll lanes, even during rush hour.”

The Flex Pass is a unique Good To Go! pass because it has two modes: “HOV” and “TOLL.” To use the Interstate 405 express toll lanes for free, carpoolers will need to activate the new Flex Pass on a Good To Go! account, then set the pass to HOV mode. The Flex Pass can also be set to TOLL mode when using the lanes as a non-HOV.

Stone pointed out that the benefits also translate to big changes for drivers in the corridor, particularly carpools. “If you already have a Good To Go! account and don’t expect to use the I-405 express toll lanes as a carpool, you’re ready to go. But if you’re an I-405 carpooler, you must have the Flex Pass to drive in those lanes toll-free.”

With the help of RideshareOnline.com, a resource for commuting options used by employers and individuals in the Northwest, WSDOT will give away Flex Passes to drivers who will regularly carpool on I-405 between Bellevue and Lynnwood. Drivers will need to register on RideshareOnline.com, or another partnering network, On the Move Bellevue, Kirkland Green Trip, Communities in Motion, Curb the Congestion and Wheel Options and fill out a survey to determine if they qualify to receive a free Flex Pass. Carpoolers can also use RideshareOnline.com’s ride-matching services to find potential carpool partners.

Getting Good To Go! for I-405 express toll lanes
If drivers don’t qualify for a free Flex Pass, they can still purchase one. For a one-time cost of $15 a Flex Pass can be purchased at GoodToGo.com, by calling 1-866-936-8246 or visiting customer service centers in Seattle, Bellevue and Gig Harbor. The Flex Pass can be used to pay a toll on all Washington state toll facilities. It can also be used on SR 167 HOT lanes as a carpool or to pay a toll. For customers who purchased a switchable pass for carpooling in the SR 167 HOT lanes, contact Good To Go! customer service to receive a free upgrade to a Flex Pass.

All payment options offered on the SR 520 Bridge will be available on the I-405 express toll lanes. Similar to the SR 520 Bridge, drivers using the I-405 express toll lanes without a Good To Go! account will receive a bill in the mail at a higher rate.

“Express toll lanes are used across the country as part of the solution to urban congestion,” said Stone. “WSDOT is using this innovative tool to help reduce congestion on I-405.”

I-405 express toll lanes overview
WSDOT is building a new lane adjacent to the carpool lane between Northeast Sixth Street in Bellevue and State Route 522 in Bothell to create a dual, express-toll-lane system, while converting the existing carpool lane between Bothell and Lynnwood into a single, express toll lane. When the project is complete in 2015, drivers will have the option to pay a toll for a faster, more reliable trip using a 17-mile system of express toll lanes from Bellevue to Lynnwood. Transit, vanpools and carpools meeting the occupancy requirement will be able to use the lanes toll-free with the new Good To Go! Flex Pass.

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