History of tolling on the Interstate Bridge

At various times through the years, people hoping to cross over the Columbia River had to pay to do so — and possibly will have to again


Cars (many of them a Ford Model T) once shared the road with a streetcar.

Transportation officials in Oregon + Washington are still ironing out plans for a replacement bridge connecting the two states along Interstate 5 between Portland and Vancouver, but one thing drivers can bank on? Tolling. And it won’t be the first time the crossing has seen toll booths.

A 5-cent toll was first levied when the original interstate bridge (today’s northbound lanes) opened to the public in 1917 and continued until 1929. After the southbound span was built, transportation officials once again charged a toll to help pay for the expansion and fund improvements to the northbound lanes. Drivers were charged 20 cents for seven years starting in 1960.

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