New Jersey Closes Unused Carpool Lanes

Living on Earth

Years ago, special carpool lanes were touted as remedies for traffic gridlock and air pollution. But over time what the bureaucrats called high-occupancy-vehicle lanes have become unpopular and unsuccessful in a number of states. Some environmental activists say federal funding for them simply encourages wider highways. And for drivers who don’t use them, the lanes are a highly visible source of frustration. Recently New Jersey Governor Christine Todd Whitman closed thirty miles of carpool lanes on two of the state’s main highways. She persuaded the federal government to let New Jersey keep more than two hundred million dollars it had received with the promise of putting in the carpool lanes. David Kocieniewski (coach-in-EV-ski) covers New Jersey for the New York Times. He says sprawling development in North Jersey may have doomed the two carpool lanes from the start.

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