Free ride over for Airport Link users


Push bikes and an alternative routes may be an option for Airport Link Tunnel users when the toll free period ends tomorrow.

But tunnel operators are optimistic that the $2.50 for a full trip toll won’t deter motorists.

Taylor Bunnag reports.

TRANSCRIPT

The free ride is almost over.

From midnight, drivers using the Airport Link M7 will start paying to use the tunnel.

But the question is, will people keep using it?

Vox 1: “I would if work would pay for my tolls.”

Vox 2: “Time is money, if it was part of my journey I would use it.”

For a trip from Bowen Hills or Toombul to Kedron, you’ll pay $2.

A full trip will cost you $2.50 while light commerical vehicles will pay slightly more.

Increases in the future will be linked to the Consumer Price Index.

Brisconnections, the operator of the $4.8 billion road, isn’t sure how many motorists will stop using the tunnel once tolling begins.

Nick Lattimore, Brisconnections Chief Financial Officer: “We’re not able to predict on a day basis. What we do know is we will lose traffic and equally we are very, very confident that that traffic will come back to the road as the free network congests.”

Even though the tunnel’s no longer free, operators are still keen to attract more users to the Airport Link before tolls increase next year.

Taxi drivers say they’ll keep using the road regardless of the price.

Vox 3: “People want to go via tunnel because it’s time saving.”

When Airport Link opened, the operators predicted 135,000 trips a day.

So far it’s averaged 75,000.

After tolling begins, only time will tell if there’s light at the end of the tunnel for Airport-Link.

Taylor Bunnag, QUT News.