Washington, DC Area: 495 Express

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Re: Washington, DC Area: 495 Express

Postby CBenson » Wed Jan 02, 2013 6:36 pm

Yes, set your navigation setting to avoid toll roads.
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Re: Washington, DC Area: 495 Express

Postby CBenson » Wed Jan 02, 2013 6:55 pm

Hmm, generally where are you routing from? If I understand you correctly, you don't want to be routed on the Beltway at all, because the Express lanes are too expensive and the regular lanes are too congested. If you ask waze for alternative routes does it not give any that avoid the Beltway?
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Re: Washington, DC Area: 495 Express

Postby CBenson » Wed Jan 02, 2013 8:19 pm

Are you able to take 66 into the city? Are you HOV-2? If you are a HOV-2 vehicle that is willing to pay the Dulles toll but not the express lane toll, you have to be the worst case scenario for mapping the express lanes.

Recalculating an express lane route is an issue I hadn't considered. Waze should provide alternate routes after the recalculation. If you hit menu>routes you should get a couple of alternatives to your current route that you can choose from. But I'm not sure when/if waze might recalculate the route back to the express lanes again if you choose an alternate.

As a side note, if its true that it is faster to get into DC from the Toll Road by taking the 495 Express lanes south than going in 66, then VDot/Transurban have to be happy.
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Re: Washington, DC Area: 495 Express

Postby CBenson » Wed Jan 02, 2013 9:44 pm

Ahh, so you are doing the reverse commute. I was hoping that you had a passenger to make this a bit safer when driving.

As you say you are the edge case. Waze is doing what it is designed to do, which is find the fastest route. The problem is that you are finding the toll excessive. Waze did finally recently add the option to avoid tolls for those that don't want to pay for the fastest route. However, there is no mechanism to indicate that you are willing to pay some tolls and not other tolls. And given the dynamic pricing of the express lanes, I'm not expecting a solution to this issue anytime in the foreseeable future.

All that being said, I'm still curious why you consistently get a recalculation to the express lanes when you are being routed in 123 or 66. When you first ask for route at your departure point, is waze's first choice to route you via 123 or 66?
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Re: Washington, DC Area: 495 Express

Postby CBenson » Wed Jan 02, 2013 10:24 pm

dunlaing wrote:My guess is that the bit between the Toll Plaza and 66 starts backing up and backs up past the entrance to 123 and then Waze reroutes me.

But, if that happens every day, I would think that waze's historic data should take the backup into account in the original routing decision. Maybe with the holidays coming so soon after the opening of the Express lanes, the traffic patterns just haven't been steady enough to get good historic data. However even if this just happens sporadically when the toll road past the beltway is particularly heavy or the express lanes are particularly light, this would still be a problem for you.

I'm guessing the other issue is that the 123 exit is so close to the Beltway. Does waze realize you are not taking the express lanes and recalculate again to tell you whether the 123 or 66 option is better before you reach the 123 exit?
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Re: Washington, DC Area: 495 Express

Postby CBenson » Thu Jan 24, 2013 9:56 pm

I suspect that your issue is not directly related to the mapping of the express lanes. I think the problem is simply that there are many routes from south Arlington to Ashburn that differ by less than 5 miles that waze can choose from, but waze only gives the 3 alternate routes. If waze's data doesn't match your experience, your route may be left off the list of options.
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Washington, DC Area: 495 Express

Postby dunlaing » Wed Jan 02, 2013 6:32 pm

In Northern Virginia, there are now express lanes on 495 S that cost an arm and a leg in EZPass tolls. There's never any significant traffic on them, so Waze constantly tells me to take them. There is a ton of traffic on the regular 495 S and the route takes me miles out of my way, so the route only works if you take the express lanes, which I don't want to do.

Is there any way to get Waze to stop recommending that I take 495 S Express Lanes?
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Re: Washington, DC Area: 495 Express

Postby dunlaing » Wed Jan 02, 2013 6:46 pm

But I take the Toll Road (267) for the rest of my trip.
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Re: Washington, DC Area: 495 Express

Postby dunlaing » Wed Jan 02, 2013 7:38 pm

Generally, I'm driving on the Toll Road with a route that will take me on 123 or 66 into the city, but then halfway there, Waze will re-route me onto 495 S Express. I don't know how to ask it for a different route at that point (and am driving when it happens).
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Re: Washington, DC Area: 495 Express

Postby dunlaing » Wed Jan 02, 2013 9:13 pm

Sorry, this is my ride home in the evening, so HOV isn't an issue on 66.

I realize I'm an edge case and Waze shouldn't necessarily change to accommodate me, but this issue has essentially made Waze useless to me in practice. I'll try it one more time with the plan to switch routes after a recalc, but I'm skeptical that it will work and be safe to do while driving.
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