MOTORISTS in South Tyneside are being warned they will face a Tyne Tunnel toll price hike in the New Year, with journey charges rising by at least 20p.
Car drivers will pay £1.60 per journey from January 1 – up from £1.40 – with heavy goods vehicles (HGV) paying £2.50, an increase of 50p.
Permit holders will continue to receive a discount of 10 per cent on each journey through the tunnels.
Paul Fenwick, project director for the Tyne & Wear Integrated Transport Authority (TWITA), which owns the tunnels, said: “The increase in tolls is essential to finance the investment made in the new crossing. Since both tunnels became operational in November 2011, journey times have reduced significantly and about 10,000 additional journeys are made through them every day.
“This demonstrates the benefits of the New Tyne Crossing to commuters and businesses.”
The Queen officially opened the new £260m two-way tunnel in July – 45 years after opening the original single-carriageway crossing.
It emerged recently that the Department of Transport had turned down a bid by Tyne and Wear Transport Authority for a £40m grant, to keep prices down.
Car driver toll prices are to remain at £1.60 in 2014, but HGV drivers are set for another increase of 70p, to £3.20, in 2014.