Andrew Edwards, Staff Writer
Created: 01/28/2012 10:20:35 PM PST

As an option to deal with increasing congestion and construction costs, toll lanes may be added to San Bernardino County freeways but not before 2017, transportation planners say.

“We won’t be adding any new freeways. The best way to increase our thoroughfares and relieve congestion may be toll lanes,” said Highland Mayor Larry McCallon, who also is president of San Bernardino Associated Governments’ (SanBAG) board. SanBAG is the highway planning agency for San Bernardino County.

Within SanBAG, adding toll lanes is still under study and the agency’s board has not made any final decisions.

The proposed lanes, however, are included as options in SanBAG’s current 10-year plan. Among other ideas, the plan includes the following proposals:

Add two toll lanes each in the west and east directions on the 10 Freeway from Milliken Avenue in Ontario to the 210 Freeway in Redlands. A single toll lane also could be built between the 210 and Ford Street in Redlands.

An alternate proposal is to add a single carpool lane in both directions from Haven Avenue in Ontario to the 10/210 freeway junction in Redlands.

The 10 Freeway’s existing carpool lanes from the Los Angeles County line to Milliken Avenue could be converted into toll lanes.

Along the 15 Freeway, a single toll lane and an auxiliary lane could be added between the 60 and 10 Freeways. Another two toll lanes could be added in both directions between the 10 Freeway and Devore Junction.

No carpool lanes are proposed as an alternative for the 15.

The toll and carpool lane proposals, when considered with other highway plans, would cost an estimated $1.03 billion if SanBAG board members select to the forgo toll lanes and stick to traditional carpool lanes.

The bulk of the funding, roughly $625 million, would be collected via the county’s Measure I gasoline tax. SanBAG officials could spend cash or issue bonds against future tax income.

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