MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) - A major update in the effort to build a new Interstate 10 bridge over the Mobile River.
Drivers will not be able to avoid the new bridge's toll by taking the Wallace Tunnel.
Project officials told FOX10 News that the plan will include tolls on both the new bridge and the existing Wallace Tunnel. That means the only free routes across the Mobile River will be the Cochrane Bridge or the Bankhead Tunnel.
Officials said the toll will be between $3 and $6. The Wallace Tunnel toll would not take effect until the new bridge is completed and ready for travel. The project will feature all-electronic tolling, meaning vehicles will not need to stop at a toll booth. Scanning devices will charge the toll by scanning license plates or by reading transponders in the vehicles.
The toll will not be the only form of funding for the bridge. The state is also preparing to apply for another federal INFRA grant to help pay for the project. Along with the new bridge, the Bayway will also be expanded from two lanes in each direction to four.
The state is also seeking a public-private partnership for the bridge. That means a private company will operate and maintain the bridge while the Alabama Department of Transportation oversees.
The Mobile River Bridge and Bayway Project said construction is anticipated to begin in 2020. Original projections had work starting in 2019.