To ease daytime traffic during the four-day New Year holiday, national freeways are to be toll-free from 12am to 5am from tomorrow to Monday, and from 12am to 10pm on Tuesday, transportation authorities said yesterday.
The Ministry of Transportation and Communications presented to the Cabinet a series of measures to manage the high traffic volume that is expected during the holiday, which for the first time extends the toll-free period on the last day of the holiday.
Southbound traffic is expected to peak tomorrow, the first day of the holiday, while the same is expected of northbound traffic on Monday, Department of Railways and Highways Director-General Chen Wen-ruey (陳文瑞) said at a news conference in Taipei after the Cabinet meeting.
From 7am to noon tomorrow, only vehicles with three or more occupants will be allowed on Sun Yat-sen Freeway’s (Freeway No. 1) southbound lanes between Taipei’s Neihu District (內湖) and Miaoli County’s Toufen (頭份), as well as southbound lanes between Taipei’s Muzha (木柵) and Hsinchu City’s Xiangshan District (香山) on Formosa Freeway (Freeway No. 3), he said.
The same rule would apply to southbound lanes between Nangang District (南港) in Taipei and Pinglin District (坪林) in New Taipei City on Chiang Wei-shui Memorial Freeway (Freeway No. 5) from 7am to noon tomorrow and on Sunday, Chen said.
Vehicle occupancy controls will also be in place from 2pm to 9pm on Monday and Tuesday on all northbound onramps between Yilan County’s Suao (蘇澳) and Toucheng (頭城) townships on Chiang Wei-shui Memorial Freeway, he added.
At usual traffic bottlenecks on freeways going south tomorrow and north on Monday, there could be as much as three to six times the usual volume of traffic, he said.
Southbound onramps on the Pingjhen (平鎮) system in Taoyuan County and Puyan (埔鹽) system in Changhua County on Sun Yat-sen Freeway will be closed for 48 hours starting at midnight tomorrow, he added.
Northbound onramps pm the Huwei (虎尾) system in Yunlin County and Puyan system on Sun Yat-sen Freeway, as well as the Jhunan (竹南) system in Miaoli County on Formosa Freeway, are to be closed for 48 hours from Monday midnight to control traffic flow, he said.
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