SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- Express lane tolling on Interstate 880 north and southbound started Friday morning from Oakland to the Fremont/Milpitas border.
The express lane tolling went active at 5 a.m. Friday and with it comes new rules of the road.
Drivers will be tolled for using the express lanes from 5 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday. Toll prices vary by traffic conditions and distance traveled.
"We want to promote clean air vehicle use, but we also want to maximize the throughput of people, not necessarily vehicles," said John Goodwin with the Metropolitan Transportation Council.
MTC is the transportation planning, financing and coordinating agency for the nine-county San Francisco Bay Area.
Solo drivers in non-clean air vehicles will pay full price for the toll. While solo drivers and two-person carpools in Clean Air Vehicles (CAVs) will pay half price with a FasTrak CAV toll tag, those include red, purple, and orange decals.
Two-person carpools with the FasTrak Flex toll tag set to the 2+ position will pay half-price tolls.
There is no toll for three-person carpools, buses, vanpool, and motorcycles with the FasTrak Flex toll tag set to 3+ position.
There are six toll zones running southbound I-880 from Hegenberger Road in Oakland to Dixon Landing Road near the Fremont/Milpitas border and five toll zones northbound from Dixon Landing to Lewelling Blvd. in San Lorenzo, according to the MTC.
Each zone will have its own rate determined by current traffic conditions, starting at 50 cents with "no limit" on how high prices can go.
"By applying market forces to this limited space on the roadway we really expect this will return the carpool lanes to the way they're supposed to perform," said Goodwin.
That means the minimum price to use the full length of the express lanes heading southbound would be three dollars at 50 cents for each of the six zones.
But drivers may have a tougher time finding two passengers headed in the same direction with more workers in the Bay Area working from home as the pandemic shutters office buildings across the region.
You must have a FasTrak in order to ride in the express carpool lanes without penalty.
Drivers without a FasTrak will be fined $25 or be able to wave a penalty by purchasing the device when billed.