Buy Your Way Out of Freeway Congestion | NBC Southern California

Buy Your Way Out of Freeway Congestion

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    LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 03: Cars drive in the High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lane (R), also called the diamond or commuter lane. (Photo by David McNew/Getty Images)

    Los Angeles County is considering congestion pricing for new toll lanes on Interstate 10 and State Route 110.

    Under the High Occupancy Toll lane (HOT) proposal transportation officials announced Monday, solo drivers would be charged between 25 cents and $1.40 per mile to use high-occupancy vehicle lanes depending on the time of day.

    Public hearings will be held in cities along the two freeways this month on the proposed prices.

    "We can no longer build our way out of the congestion situation," Rick Jager, a Metro spokesman, told the Orange County Register. "We've got to try some innovative solutions."

    The project, which has received more than $200 million in federal grant money, is set to be completed by December 2010. State and local highway officials will convert current carpool lanes on 14 miles of I-10 and 11 miles of I-110 into toll lanes.

    Carpoolers would still be able to use the lanes without charge.

    In Orange County, transportation official plan to seek public input this fall on similar proposals. Orange County Transportation Authority officials are considering HOT lanes on the 405 Freeway between LA County and Euclid Street.