PORTSMOUTH, Va. (WAVY) — Elizabeth River Crossings has announced increased toll rates for the Downtown and Midtown Tunnels effective Jan. 1.

For passenger vehicles using an EZPass, the toll rate during off-peak hours will increase by 16 cents, from $2.10 to $2.26 per trip. For those without an EZPass, the rate for off-peak hours will increase by 49 cents, from $6.28 to $6.77 per trip. Off-peak hours are from midnight to 5:30 a.m., 9 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. to midnight.

During peak hours, the passenger vehicle EZPass toll rate will increase by 29 cents, from $2.77 to $3.06 per trip. Those without an EZPass will pay an extra 62 cents per trip during peak hours, with the rate going from the current $6.95 to $7.57. Peak hours are from 5:30 a.m. to 9 a.m., and 2:30 p.m. to 7 p.m.

For heavy vehicles with an EZPass, including tractor trailers and cars with trailers, the toll rate during off-peak hours will increase by 49 cents per trip, from $6.28 to $6.77. During peak hours, the rate for heavy vehicles with an EZPass will go up by $1.16, from $11.08 per trip to $12.24.

For heavy vehicles without an EZPass, the off-peak rate will increase by 82 cents, from $10.46 to $11.28 per trip. The peak rate for heavy vehicles will increase by $1.49, from $15.26 to $16.75 per trip.

According to ERC, tolls help pay for the continued finance, operations, and maintenance of the Downtown and Midtown Tunnels, the MLK Expressway, and approximately 51 lane miles of roadway.

In October, VDOT and ERC announced the expansion of the toll relief program for those who make up to $65,000 a year. The program allows eligible residents to save 50% on up to 14 trips per week through the Downtown and Midtown Tunnels.

To be eligible residents must:

  • Earn less than $65,000 per year
  • Live in Hampton Roads
  • Drive a passenger vehicle (vehicle over 2-axles are ineligible)
  • Have a Virginia E-ZPass transponder

Those interested in the toll relief program must enroll in-person at the E-ZPass Customer Service Centers in Portsmouth or Norfolk, or the DriveERT Customer Care Center on County St. in Portsmouth. Proof of residency and income are required.