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HOV/HOT Lane to Speed Weekend Roll to the Beach

Two or More Occupants or Toll for One Could Be Just the Ticket



May 15, 2013

mapWeekend travel time to Galveston should get a little shorter beginning Saturday, May 18 when METRO opens a 15.5 mile stretch of the Gulf Freeway (IH-45 South) for carpool and toll travel on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays. The HOV lane extends from the downtown area to near Dixie Farm Road. The action, approved by the METRO Board of Directors, is part of a pilot program which will end on Monday, September 2, 2013.

Metro Board Chairman Gilbert Garcia said, “Use of the HOV/HOT lane should provide congestion relief and ease transit during peak weekend hours on a very popular route.  We want to do everything we can to help improve transit and mobility in the region.”        

  • On Saturdays and holidays the HOV/HOT lane opens for southbound drivers from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.  Northbound traffic will use the lane from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • On Sundays, when the stream of vehicles returning to Houston is heaviest, northbound vehicles can access the HOV/HOT lane from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

The weekend 45 South HOV lane is free for vehicles with two or more occupants. 

Solo drivers who want to use the lane on the weekend will pay $1.00 each way.  Those drivers must have a toll tag.  The pilot program will help METRO determine the usefulness of a carpool and toll lane on IH-45 South during weekends and holidays.

For more information about METRO’s HOV and HOT lanes visit

The Metropolitan Transit Authority of Harris County (METRO) is the region’s largest public transit provider, offering safe, reliable and affordable transportation services about 370,000 times per day. Besides operating more than 1,200 buses, METRO is currently expanding its 7.5-mile light-rail line (Red Line), with three new lines under construction. METRO’s services also include: STAR Vanpool, METROLift, HOV lanes, HOT lanes, Bikes-on-Buses/Trains program, Park & Ride and road improvement projects.