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Long-Awaited Maryland Bridge Open to Cyclists

Two axles is two axles, doesn't matter whether the vehicle is motorized or not. However, cyclists will be restricted as to when they can cross the Thomas J. Hatem Memorial Bridge (US 40) over the Susquehanna River when it opens to cyclists July 1.
July 3, 2016, 1pm PDT | Irvin Dawid
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Maryland cyclists have been waiting a long time to have access to any of the four bridges over the Susquehanna between Havre de Grace and Perryville, wrote Streetsblog's Tanya Snyder in April 2014.

A February post on TheWashCycle states, "I hope they do keep a token toll for cyclist (a nickel or something) just as a counterpoint to the 'cyclists don't pay anything' argument."

No worries there. Cyclists will be definitely pay something! In fact, they'll pay the same $8 toll as cars.

According to the Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA), cyclists will be restricted to "9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday and from dawn to dusk Saturday, Sunday and state holidays."

And don't expect a bike lane for your $8 either. However, MDTA has given cyclists permission to 'take the lane' upon activating the bike light, though there's no saying how motorists will react.

Prior to crossing the bridge, bicyclists push a button to activate flashing warning lights that alert drivers when a bicyclist is crossing the bridge.  The lights will flash for 10 to 15 minutes, providing the bicyclist time to safely cross the bridge.

Bicyclists must ride in the direction of traffic and should position themselves in the center of the right lane. Motorists are encouraged to use the left lane when warning lights are flashing.

The Hatem Bridge could prove to be another 'first' for cyclists: Can you attach E-ZPass to a bicycle (or your back)?

Bicyclists traveling eastbound will pay the $8 two-axle toll in the far right toll lane (cash and E-ZPass accepted).

Per the Thomas J. Hatem Memorial Bridge toll schedule, E-ZPass commuters pay $2.80, a savings of $5.20.

For more information, see David Anderson's June 30 article in The Baltimore Sun.

Hat tip to AASHTO Daily Transportation Update.

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Published on Thursday, June 30, 2016 in Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) News Release
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