Toll Bridge Regulation: A Method of Mass Transit Financing and Air Quality Control

Abstract

With regard to bridges, Congress moved at a slightly different pace, although a free bridge policy eventually prevailed. Both before and after the General Bridge Act of 1906 public and private bridges were permitted to charge tolls, limited only by the requirement that the charge remain "reasonable and just." Later, in granting approval for the construction of each new bridge, Congress added the restriction that tolls could not exceed an amount necessary to repay the cost of construction." The General Bridge Act of 1946 limited this "no-profit" restriction to publicly-owned bridges, while privately-owned structures remained subject only to the "reasonable and just" standard.

Keywords

Bridges, Air pollution, Public finance

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Authors

Gerald M. Tierney (Federal Highway Administration)

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