Toll fee hike mulled for NLEX - report

Should the Toll Regulatory Board approve this?

Traveling to the north may become more expensive next year as operator of the North Luzon Expressway (NLEX) plans to increase the toll fees from Balintawak to Bocaue, Bulacan (open system) by at least 10 percent.

The Manila North Tollways Corp. (MNTC) is reportedly planning to hike the toll fees from P5 to P13 by January 2011, reported. The toll fee hike will cover improvements and rehabilitation of the NLEX.

If the Toll Regulatory Board approves the proposed toll fee hike, the current fee of P36 for Class 1 vehicles could go up to P41 next year. Class 2 vehicles could be charged P102 from the current fee of P91, while Class 3 vehicles could pay up to P122 from the current rate of P109. The report did not mention how the planned toll fee increase will affect the rates for the NLEX’s open system from Marilao in Bulacan to Sta. Ines in Pampanga.

The MNTC said it is authorized to implement a toll fee hike every two years based on its contract. The company also said its proposed hike is still lower than the NLEX’s toll fee rates in 2005.

In the report, MNTC spokesperson Marilyn Ochoa said the company has maximized everything it has spent on the NLEX by modernizing it and making its system fully computerized.

Last June, the company formally opened the Mindanao Avenue-NLEX to decongest the traffic in the Balintawak Cloverleaf. The MNTC is also planning to add closed circuit television cameras and a speed radar gun to monitor motorists using the NLEX.

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