How it Helps
Requirements and Exemptions:
The identification method for eligible vehicles and exemptions varies from state to state, so each municipality should consider who should be able to access the HOV lanes in the area.
State or local police officers will be required to enforce HOV lane requirements. Some programs may also encourage self-reporting mechanisms by other commuters to report violators.
Design and Operation:
One important factor to consider during the planning of HOV lanes is how the HOV lane should be separated from the rest of traffic.3 For example, HOV lanes can be separated by concrete barriers or even be above or below the main road. HOV lanes can also be operated during different periods of the day, depending on commuter needs. The lane can be open 24 hours, only during peak hours, or during special events. Planners will also have to consider the number and placement of HOV lane entrances, as well as the lane endpoint, to maximize effectiveness of this intervention.
1) Houston Metro HOV Lanes
The Houston Metro offers HOV lanes that allows commuters to travel faster and avoid traffic congestion during peak hours. Carpoolers, vanpools, and motorcycles are allowed to ride the HOV lanes for free, while solo drivers also have the option to utilize the lanes if they pay a toll.