Here’s a squib from the Abbotsford News about the effect of tolls on the Golden Ears bridge:

Taking a toll

Traffic on the new Golden Ears Bridge dropped almost in half after tolls took effect July 16.

TransLink says 258,000 vehicles crossed the week before tolling began and that dropped to 134,000 in the week after.

That’s a 52 per cent retention rate, says spokesman Ken Hardie, adding that’s better than the 40 to 50 per cent expected.

This makes it sound like Translink wanted people to keep using the bridge, and maybe that is the best thing right now.  I have no idea about the bridge.  But there’s a broader lesson here too.  People use a lot less of a thing when it’s non-free than when it’s free.  Tolls ease congestion.

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