MAINE. The Turnpike Authority has presented 10 options for upping tolls, but favors a plan focusing on hikes for the York, New Gloucester and West Gardiner toll plazas. Hikes would be roughly 50 percent greater than current tolls. The authority is accepting written comment through July 16.
MICHIGAN. The Ambassador Bridge Plaza now has a two-lane road for inbound commercial vehicles from Canada, eliminating the need for trucks to use neighborhood streets. The road provides truckers a direct route from the plaza to I-75 and I-96. Reconfiguring multi-lane roads within the plaza should be done by October.
MISSOURI. As part of its initiative to expand interstate truck parking, the state is transforming I-29 rest areas to truck parking. The Mound City rest areas will offer 60 spaces each after conversion. The locations will provide minimal facilities.
NEW YORK. Ten bridges on Route 400 in Erie and Monroe counties are undergoing repair projects, which are scheduled to be completed this fall. One lane of traffic will be maintained in both directions during construction.
NORTH CAROLINA. A 1.5-mile section of N.C. 194 is closed in Watauga County, east of Banner Elk, to allow crews to perform road work related to the construction of a retaining wall. Work is expected to be completed in October. Drivers are advised to follow the detour of Pigeon Roost Road.
OHIO. A new law banning texting while driving takes effect in late August. Warnings will be issued to offenders for the first six months. Afterward, fines will range from $150 to $300.
VIRGINIA. The state has launched a mobile app for 511 traffic information that includes real-time traffic cameras, travel times, electronic message signs and traffic maps, construction zones.
Arkansas Best buys Panther Expedited for $180M
Arkansas Best has closed on its $180 million acquisition of Panther Expedited Services, which will become a sister company to AB’s largest subsidiary, ABF Freight System.
The Arkansas transportation holding company announced the purchase June 15 of the Ohio-based company that described itself as “North America’s largest independent expedited transportation provider.”
Arkansas Best bought Panther, which leases 1,007 owner-operators, from the private equity firm Fenway Partners. The purchases price includes repayment of Panther’s outstanding debt of $100 million.
— Jill Dunn
Mexican officials corroborate Bogan’s story
On June 19, the El Paso City Council unanimously approved a resolution urging the U.S. and Mexico to work to free Jabin Akeem Bogan, who’s been incarcerated in a Veracruz federal prison since April 17.