The Problems With Toll Roads

The Denver Post publishes an investigative series entitled "Truth Be Tolled", exposing errors in toll road forecasting, and suggesting that financial conflicts of interest may be responsible.
June 1, 2006, 11am PDT | Norm Marshall
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This is an investigative news story describing how toll road forecasts are consistently overestimated, including details from several states, and interviews with people running toll agencies, those forecasting toll road usage, and those who rate toll bonds.

This is part two of a three-part series, and focuses on case studies in South Carolina, Florida, and Texas. At the end of the article, there is a table describing operating toll roads in eight states.

The other two parts in the series are also good, but are more focused on the Denver region.

"'Nobody thought it was a good idea,' Ashmore said. 'Nobody believed that it would work. Nobody believed that it would pay.'

Nobody, that is, except the companies that performed the traffic and revenue projections for the road and had an even larger financial stake in seeing it built.

Ashmore's story and the story of the toll road called the Southern Connector have been repeated in similar forms from Florida to Colorado as developers and governments increasingly turn to toll roads to spur growth."

Thanks to Norm Marshall

Full Story:
Published on Monday, May 29, 2006 in The Denver Post
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