ROAD TOLLS make cents and big bucks for toll companies, who send much of their income overseas, and maybe some landlords, but the average road user is not better off. In fact they get ripped off.
The cost of road tolls is passed on to consumers in retail prices. Some you can see as in taxi fares, some you can't as in shop prices. Any benefit road users get in reduced travel times is eaten away as more single-occupant cars cram the roads until freeway speeds go lower than bicycle speeds more often. That's the case in Melbourne anyway.
Motorcycles & scooter riders should not be tolled anywhere in Australia. Bike tolls are a very small part of toll companies' income. Bikes help traffic flow. They do little or no damage to infrastructure. And freeways can be safer than major roads for riders because there are no intersections. Tolls encourage some riders to commute by car which increases traffic congestion, road damage and pollution.
Last week the Property Council of Australia (PCA. See earlier blog.) called for existing freeways to be tolled to pay for more infrastructure, read toll roads. The PCA apparently represents property owners and developers who have a vested interest in toll roads. The PCA is apparently not concerned with average Australians who have to use roads in one way or another to earn a living. I think toll roads are literally highway robbery. Toll roads should not exist in this country.
If they toll existing roads in Melbourne, they will do it in other cities. How long before the cost of a trip from Melbourne to Albury/Wodonga is increased by tolls on The Hume?