Two new gantries are being erected along the Bridgewater Expressway in Runcorn over the next month so testing of tolling technology can be carried out, ahead of the Mersey Gateway opening in autumn 2017.
The technology, to be installed and managed by Emovis, will also be used for traffic crossing the Silver Jubilee Bridge when it re-opens after refurbishment.
The equipment is being installed over the next four weeks, during which time there will be some lane closures on both east and westbound sections of the Expressway.
Because of the technology, drivers will be able to travel over either bridge without stopping at toll booths. No drivers will be charged during the testing period later this year.
David Parr, chief executive of the Mersey Gateway Crossings Board and Halton Borough Council, said: “As the project moves toward its latter stages, the innovative free-flow tolling system must be tested to ensure the smooth operation of both bridges when the Mersey Gateway opens in autumn 2017.
“We have ensured that the installation of the test gantries will have minimal impact on traffic. Users will be able to travel across the bridge as normal.”
Once the new bridge is open, eligible Halton residents will be able to cross both bridges for free at the point of use provided they register their vehicles in advance, for a charge of £10 per vehicle per year.
Emovis is an international motorway operator and smart mobility solutions provider. The company has more than 600 employees across seven countries and specialises in multi-lane free-flow projects, including the delivery of operations such as the Dartford crossing and the Port Mann and Golden Ears bridges in Vancouver.