The American Transportation Research Institute reports toll revenues have risen 72.54% over 10 years, with $14.7 billion in revenue collected in 2018 alone. For fleets, toll costs amounted to 45 cents per mile, which exceeds every cost per mile metric from ATRI’s 2018 operational cost survey with the exception of driver wages at just under 60 cents per mile.
Almost 50% of toll revenue is used for projects other than the operation of toll roads and bridges, according to ATRI. Of the total $7.1 billion profit gained from tolls, commercial truck drivers paid $2.03 billion, or 28.5% of the total. Also, $3.013 billion was transferred out by nine of the 21 toll systems to other agencies, including mass transit and non-toll facility-related transportation.
ATRI collected public financial data from annual financial reports published by 21 major toll systems. After ATRI standardized financial comparisons across systems and developing toll financial metrics, it sent toll authorities the results, asking them to calibrate or corroborate the financial data. Nine of the 21 toll systems responded. The sample of 21 toll systems represents more than 80% of all U.S. toll collections.
ATRI’s analysis also included an analysis of the relationship between interstate commerce and toll road use. According to the report, 79% of truck trips involving toll roads that were part of the study sample were engaged in critical interstate commerce, which generated $3.327 billion in toll revenue. You can download the full report here.