Austin toll roads
Austin is believed to be one of the most interesting American destinations. It’s the state capital of Texas that offers a lot to both locals and visitors. It’s famous for amazing food, great live music venues, as well as outdoor adventures like kayaking down Lady Bird Lake. On top of that, Austin has over fifty breweries. On the other hand, when it comes to driving and getting around the city, the county is among one of the most expensive toll roads in the USA. Let’s dive deeper into all Austin toll roads.
Toll roads in Austin
Currently, there are ten toll roads in Austin.
Texas State Highway 130 (also known as Pickle Parkway) – segments 1 through 4
SH 130 is a highway that stretches from San Antonio, along I-40 and I-10 to the east of Seguin, and then north as a tollway to the north of Georgetown. It is a 90 mile long alternate route for the San Antonio-Austin corridor built to relieve the Interstate’s traffic volume. If you are traveling through Texas and want to avoid Austin traffic completely, this route allows you to bypass traffic in downtown Austin. One of its sections has the highest posted speed limit in the country – 85 miles per hour.
State Highway 45 – South-East
SH 45 was built in 1985. It is 25 miles long. It is a highway loop around Austin that exists in 2 open segments. The southeast segment provides a direct link between I-35 and State Highway 130. It runs from Ranch to Market Road 1826 to Farm to Market Road 1626 and interests the southern terminus of Loop 1. Since it was built, it has helped reduce traffic congestion on I-35, SH 71, and other major transportation facilities, providing alternative routes for thru-traffic such as NAFTA trade traffic.
State Highway 45 – North
The second segment of SH 45 travels to the north of Austin across Round Rock between RM 620 and SH 130. It was completed in 2 stages – in 2006 and 2007. It is approximately 13 miles long. Its western terminus is at US 183 northwest of Austin in Cedar Park.
Texas State Highway Loop 1 – Mopac Expressway
The road provides access to the west side of Austin, Texas. Commonly known as Mopac Expressway, it is nearly 26 miles long. The name Mopac (or Mopac Boulevard) comes from the Missouri Pacific Railroad. The expressway (from US 290 to Farm to Market Road 1325) was designated in 1967, 18 years later the designation was extended southward (from US 290 to SH 45).
State Highway 130 (extension segments 5 and 6)
SH 130 – segments 5-6 – was opened in 2012 as a safe, fast, and reliable alternative to congested I-35 through Central Texas. It extends from Mustang Ridge at SH 45 to I-10 in Seguin. It’s a four-lane, 91-mile toll road with a high legal speed limit of 85 mph.
183A Toll Road
This 10.6 mile route was opened in 2007. It crosses sections in north Austin, Cedar Park, and Leander, providing a bypass for US Route 183. The tolled section of 183A Toll Road runs from US 183 near State Highway 45 to FM 2243 in Leander.
Manor Expressway (Phase 1 and Phase 2)
This expressway is a major road facility and one of the busiest roads in Texas. It’s a 6.2 mile long, limited-access road built in Travis County. It includes three tolled express lanes and three non-tolled frontage lanes in each direction. There is also a 6 mile long footpath for pedestrians and bikes.
Cesar Chavez Express Toll Lanes (Loop 375)
Loop 375 is an 11-mile, six-lane toll road built as an alternative east-west route to Interstate 10. It was opened to the public in 2019. The route runs from the east of downtown to Racetrack Drive on the west side.
Texas Toll Loop 49
The route was built to move vehicles over long distances in East Texas at 70-75 mph. It is 32 miles long and connects with I-20 providing an alternative route from Tyler to this major Interstate route. Loop 49 is often called Toll 49. It encircles the city of Tyler and serves various communities in Northeast Texas. It exists as an undivided 2-lane highway running from US 69 near Lindale to SH 10 near Whitehouse.
State Highway 550
State Highway 550 is a limited-access toll route completed in 2020 and designated as I-169. It connects the Port of Brownsville and State Highway 48 to Interstate 69E. It is 10 miles long (the tolled part is 3 miles long). It provides a new entry point for truck traffic to the Port of Brownsville, which serves as a relief route for traffic congestion.
How to pay for toll roads in Austin
Paying tolls in Austin is a process similar to paying in other counties in Texas. You can easily pay for Austin toll roads by a TxDot-issued TxTag tag transponder or online. Most people decide to use intuitive payment applications like Uproad. In Texas, you can have immediate activation of your vehicle in Uproad, so you don’t have to wait to receive a TxTag in the mail.
The Uproad app allows you to manage all toll payments with just a few clicks. The exact amounts you pay for Austin toll roads vary depending on the toll facility, payment method, and vehicle’s axle amount. Below you will find some examples of tolls for 2-axle cars and motorcycles (some major toll roads):
Highway 183A – toll plaza: Lakeline Mainline – TxTag toll rate: $0.58.
SH 130 Pickle Parkway – toll plaza: SH 29 – TxTag toll rate: $0.52.
Loop 1 – all plazas – TxTag toll rate: $1.15.
Highway 183 – toll plaza: 51st Street SB Exit Ramp – TxTag toll rate: $0.66.