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Glossary of Terms

Learn more about tolling terms on this Web site or in other information about tolling.

Active Traffic Management

Technology that helps reduce congestion and increase safety by giving information and guidance to drivers about traffic conditions. Examples include overhead signs in each lane to slow drivers in advance of a bottleneck, and electronic signs that provide real travel times and guidance about suggested lane changes or reroutes.

Bridge Toll

A toll collected to pay for a specific bridge project. One example is the toll on the new Tacoma Narrows Bridge.

Congestion Pricing

Generally referred to as "variable tolling." Toll rates that vary, either by time of day, or based upon traffic levels. When tolls vary by traffic levels, the toll rate adjusts automatically based on traffic volumes or speeds to keep traffic moving quickly.

Cordon Toll

Electronic tolling at the entrance to a crowded city center or other metropolitan area to keep traffic moving. One international example is Londonís Congestion Charging program.

Electronic Toll Collection

Collecting tolls without the use of toll booths, generally with an electronic device or computer chip. Drivers do not need to slow down or stop to have their toll collected.

HOT Lanes

HOT lanes (high-occupancy toll lanes) offer an option for solo drivers to access high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes to enjoy a more reliable trip in the carpool lane. Generally, this fee is dynamic; toll rates change with traffic levels to ensure that cars in the lane move at or above a set speed. In Washington, the first HOT lanes project recently opened on SR 167.

Open Road Tolling

Similar to electronic toll collection. Tolls are collected without toll booths, generally with an electronic device or computer chip. Drivers do not need to slow down or stop to have their toll collected.

Variable Tolling

Toll rates that vary, either by time of day, or based upon traffic levels. When tolls vary by traffic levels, the toll rate adjusts automatically based on traffic volumes or speeds to keep traffic moving quickly. Can also be referred to as "congestion pricing."