The fact that Alabama has four toll roads in the state is not well-known to many commuters. Its toll roads are in Montgomery, Orange Beach, Wetumpka, and Tuscaloosa. Another fact that is not commonly known to the people is that toll roads and bridges are owned and operated by private stakeholders.
The toll assets in the state of Alabama are owned and operated by American Roads. The company also owns an international tunnel connecting Alabama with Detroit, Michigan with Windsor, and Ontario in Canada.
American Roads is funded by its parent company, DIF Capital Partners, which has acquired or developed 26 toll roads since 2005. The company maintains that in addition to alleviating traffic in areas such as Tuscaloosa and Orange Beach that witness a heavy influx of tourists, it also aims to develop and provide job opportunities in the local communities.
Toll Roads in Alabama
There exist four major toll roads and bridges in Alabama, as listed below:
- Montgomery Expressway Bridge
The Montgomery Expressway Bridge connects the capital of Alabama to the towns that lie in the city’s northern region, and it crosses over the Alabama river. The total length of the toll road is 12.5 miles and can be accessed by driving via the Alabama River Parkway. The major cities that it connects across its expanse are Newark and Newport. Commuters will find that the Montgomery Expressway Bridge saves them the traffic they would encounter on the I-65. You can also save time and gas, as this toll road connects with State Route 152.
The toll road is open 24/7, and toll fee is collected at all hours. However, commuters who use the bridge often can get an Alabama Freedom Pass not only to save time but also to avail of offers that might be available with frequent use of the card. If you use a 2-axle car or any other vehicle, the toll fee comes out to $1.50. The fees for 3-axle and 4-axle trucks are $1.75 and $2.00, respectively. Beyond this, the toll fee is an increase of $0.25 per axle. Payment can be made via cash, debit or credit card, or an Alabama Freedom Pass.
- Tuscaloosa Bypass
The 18-mile-long Tuscaloosa Bypass can help commuters quickly reach Northport from Tuscaloosa, as they avoid the traffic congestion on I-359. The Bypass also connects US Highway 82, among others, with I-20 and I-59. The toll road can be accessed via the Joe Mallisham Parkway. The toll is collected around the clock, and frequent commuters can save money by investing in an Alabama Freedom Pass as it offers discounts with more usage.
A flat sum of $1.50 is charged for all cars using the Tuscaloosa Bypass. For trucks, however, the cost differs depending on the vehicle’s number of axles. 3-axle trucks are charged $1.75, and 4-axle trucks are charged $2.00. Each additional axle leads to an increment of $0.25 in the base price. You can pay via cash, debit or credit card, or the Alabama Freedom Pass.
- Emerald Mountain Expressway (Dozier Road)
If you wish to travel in or out of Montgomery but dread the traffic congestion on Highway 231, then the Emerald Mountain Expressway is a great alternative. Not only will you save on money and gas, but you will also be able to enjoy scenic beauty along the route. The total distance covered by the Expressway is about 2 miles, which can be accessed on Dozier Road off the Ware Ferry Road (State Route 64) and Rifle Range Road (State Route 4).
The toll fee is collected on the Expressway irrespective of the hour of the day. The cost of a toll for cars on the road is $1.75. For trucks, the toll cost differs according to the number of axles present. Trucks with 3-axle have to pay $2.00, those with 4-axle have to pay $2.25, and 5-axle trucks pay $2.50. Each increase in axle costs an additional $0.25. Customers can pay via cash, credit or debit cards, or Alabama Freedom Pass.
- Foley Beach Express Toll Bridge
Highway 59 connects I-10 and Foley with the Orange Beach and Gulf Shores region. However, the heavy traffic on the highway makes commuting a time-consuming activity. The Beach Express is the perfect alternative for those who wish to avoid traffic on their route. You can find the Foley Beach Express via exit 49 on the I-10. The Expressway stretches for 14 miles and is shortened as BEX.
Toll fees are collected 24/7 and can be paid via cash, credit or debit card, or the Alabama Freedom Pass. Frequent travelers can avail the benefit of unlimited access passes and rewards when using the Alabama Freedom Pass. The toll cost for cars is $2.75. Trucks with 2-axle also pay $2.75 at the toll. However, an additional $1.00 is charged per increase in the number of axles.
Read: Indiana Toll Roads
Alabama Freedom Pass
The Alabama Freedom Pass is a prepaid toll payment system, akin to a debit card for tolls, that uses an electronic transponder tag across the toll roads and bridges in the state. The tag is attached to your vehicle’s windshield, and the toll amount is deducted directly from your account when you cross the toll plaza. Customers can benefit from the discount programs offered by the Freedom Pass to frequent users. Moreover, you can use your Apple or Android phones to pay the toll cost at any Alabama Freedom Pass facility.
All four toll roads mentioned above accept the Alabama Freedom Pass payment method. Since Alabama does not accept E-ZPass, frequent users can use the Freedom Pass instead.
Using the Alabama Freedom Pass
Interested people can sign up for the Alabama Freedom Pass online and create a prepaid account. There is no restriction on the number of cards registered through one account.
Charge your Freedom Pass with a prepaid amount online, and your card is ready to be used across toll roads in Alabama. While passing through the toll plazas, all you have to do is hold the pass in front of the reader in the unmanned toll lane, and the appropriate amount will be deducted from the balance on the card.
Though any leftover balance is not refunded, the expiration limit of the Alabama Freedom Pass is quite flexible and can be used for future travel through the state.