New traffic controls on Freeway No.5 unveiled for Mid-Autumn Festival

Traffic control measures will be in place Dec. 29.- Jan. 1, with tolls suspended between 12 p.m. and 5 a.m. on the first three days, according to the Taiwan Area National Freeway Bureau.

Taipei, Sept. 20 (CNA)-New traffic controls will for the first time be imposed on Freeway No. 5 on a trial basis during the upcoming Mid-Autumn Festival holiday to ease anticipated traffic congestion, the Freeway Bureau of the Ministry of Transportation and Communications (MOTC) said Thursday.

The freeway connecting Taipei and Yilan, which often has severe traffic jams during holidays, will be toll-free for the first time between 6 a.m. and 3 p.m. one day before and one day after the holiday period Sept. 22-24 to encourage people to travel on those two days, according to the bureau.

The trial measure was devised based on a bureau estimate that the traffic capacity of Freeway No. 5 will be about 7,000 vehicles between 6 a.m. and 3 p.m. Sept. 21 and Sept. 25, it said.

The bureau forecast that some sections of Freeway No. 5 at certain time periods during the holiday are expected to see congestion, including between 7 a.m. and noon and between 2 p.m. and 5 p.m. Sept. 22 on the freeway’s southbound lanes between the Nangang onramp in Taipei and the Pinglin onramp in New Taipei; from 7 a.m. to noon Sept. 23 on the southbound Nangang-Pinglin lanes and between 2 p.m. and 11 p.m. that day on the northbound lanes between Yilan and Pinglin.

On Sept. 24, the last day of the holiday, between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m., traffic congestion is likely on the freeway’s northbound lanes between Yilan and Pinglin, according to the bureau. Between 7 a.m. and noon Sept. 22-23, only vehicles with three or more occupants will be allowed to enter Freeway No. 5’s southbound lanes from Nangang and the Shiding and Pinglin onramps in New Taipei, it noted.