95 Express

The End of the Road
4:46 pm
Wed July 30, 2014

How Much Do Free 95 Express Trips Cost The State?

Florida's future highway: express lanes but no free rides.
Credit Florida Department of Transportation

The Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) is finished with free trips in the fast lanes. The newly opened 595 Express and the planned 75 Express and Palmetto Express projects do not and will not include free rides for anyone.

But 95 Express, the first system of its kind in Florida, was the exception. Those lanes were created by converting high-occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes into toll lanes, so HOV toll exemptions were initially grandfathered in.

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The End of the Road
7:38 pm
Sat July 19, 2014

Free Rides In 95 Express Lanes Coming To An End For Hybrid Drivers

Self-loathing Prius owner Bobby Wells bought his car for the free rides in 95 Express.
Credit Kenny Malone

To be perfectly honest, Bobby Wells, a Harley-riding, python-owning Miami lawyer, doesn’t really like his Toyota Prius.

But he does love that red and blue “95 Express” registration decal on the bottom left of his hybrid car’s windshield.

“Yeah,” said Wells, “the reason I bought this car was to get that sticker.”

I-95’s express lanes — where the price of admission ranges from 50 cents to $10.50 depending on traffic — are free to registered hybrids. But that’s not going to last forever.

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The End of the Road
6:55 am
Mon June 23, 2014

Are "Lexus Lanes" Really Lexus Lanes?

The term "Lexus Lanes" seems originated in the mid '90s and became a synonym for all express lane projects. But how accurate is it really?
Credit Concavo Wheels, (Creative Commons License: https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/)

Brian Rick is on a crusade. As a spokesman for the Florida Department of Transportation he has chewed the ear of dozens, maybe a hundred people -- reporters, friends, anybody who refers to 95 Express as the “Lexus Lanes.”

“You don’t see a Lexus every two or three cars," Rick says. He notices the pickup trucks and work vans. "If you're delivering auto parts or you're delivering medical supplies... that's where reliability becomes essential. "

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The End of the Road
8:54 pm
Mon May 12, 2014

95 Express Has Hit New Max Toll At Least 12 Times, But Appears To Be Working

95 Express toll sign at an onramp just north of NW 36th Street.
Credit Kenny Malone

The maximum possible toll on 95 Express increased from $7 to $10.50 on March 1. Two days later at 5:30 p.m., the cost of using the northbound express lanes hit the $10.50 maximum.

Rory Santana from the Florida Department of Transportation says a truck jack-knifed and backed up the highway, so people flooded 95 Express and drove the price into the ceiling.

Since March 1 the cost of a ride in the fast lane has hit $10.50 at least 13 times.  Nine of those cases occurred on the northbound express lanes, seven of which happened between 5:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. 

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The End of the Road
7:46 am
Mon February 3, 2014

I-95's Narrow Shoulders And Speeding Cars Problematic For FHP

Credit By Jeffrey Katz, courtesy FDOT

The 95 Express Project has gotten traffic moving. Sometimes, arguably, moving too well.

FDOT numbers show that the average speed of express lane traffic during the majority of the day is between 64 and 66 MPH. That means the “average” car during those times is speeding by as much as 11 MPH.

The speed limit, which is the same for both the express lanes and the general purpose lanes, is either 55 MPH or 60 MPH depending on where you are.

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The End of the Road
10:58 pm
Sun January 19, 2014

Buses: The Future Of Transportation In South Florida

Ridership on 95 Express buses from Golden Glades has increased about 50 percent in the last few years.
Credit Kenny Malone / WLRN

Behold the future, South Florida.

Commuter Mary Hammett rides a transport module that zips down what many call “I-95.” It moves faster than most cars. Hammett relaxes in the back and pulls out her iPhone, which automatically logs in to the module’s WiFi network.

She taps open the Pandora app and gives the James Fortune station a thumbs up -- a 'like' button on the little screen. As Hammett travels to her downtown Miami office, it's all smooth sailing and silky gospel vocals.

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