04:37 AM

DFW International Airport Begins Taking Tolltags For Faster, More Convenient Trips

DFW International Airport Begins Taking Tolltags For Faster, More Convenient Trips

DFW INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, Texas (October 1, 2003) — Threetime Indianapolis 500 winner Johnny Rutherford sat in the pole position and officially became DFW's first TollTag® user today, leading a caravan of regional transportation and government leaders who zipped through the Airport's North Parking Plaza in a matter of seconds. Rutherford, a Fort Worth native, was invited to be the lead TollTag driver and demonstrate the ease and speed of using a North Texas Tollway Authority (NTTA) TollTag to navigate DFW. 

The Airport officially begins accepting TollTags today in its Terminal Parking garages and for pass-through and drop-off fees, becoming the first major Airport in the country to link its parking operation with a regional and state toll collection system. Texas Motor Speedway (TMS) loaned Rutherford's 2003 Chevrolet Monte Carlo, its official pace car, for the inaugural trip through a TollTag lane, which also included the NTTA’s 34-foot TagWagon.

"This is something our guests have been asking for and we are thrilled to deliver," says Jeff Fegan, CEO at DFW. "This is yet another improvement in the continuing evolution of great customer service at DFW. And it opens DFW to thousands of TollTag users for quick, convenient trips to the Airport." Fegan said all of DFW's parking lots and parking plaza booths will begin accepting TollTags in 2004.

TollTag users will need to remember a few simple tips when coming to DFW:

Use one of 14 TollTag lanes at the North and South Parking Plazas, clearly marked with the official TollTag orange circle with the black "T" inside

Slow down when approaching the plaza's parking gates

Contact the North Texas Tollway Authority at 972 818 6882 or http://www.ntta.org to assure the TollTag is linked to a credit card

Charges of $10 or more will be charged directly to a customer's credit card

The Airport has also established a special web link – http://www.dfwairport.com/tolltag -- to answer customer questions.

DFW, the NTTA, TransCore and the North Texas Commission (NTC) have worked closely together for a number of months to make TollTag interoperability a customer service reality. Today's announcement at DFW extends well beyond the 18,000 acres of the Airport. TollTag users will now be able to drive on all toll roads in North Texas and soon connect with the Harris County Toll Road Authority and its EZ TAG® system in Houston.

“I believe this is an incredible example of regional cooperation,” said Jerry Hiebert, NTTA Executive Director. “The successful interoperability of TollTags between the DFW Airport and NTTA will be a great benefit for our customers and is a model of cooperation and technology for other regions of the country.”

DFW began working with TransCore in 1999 to offer Airport drivers PassKey® service. PassKey allowed drivers to use special tags and gates to charge their parking fees. Now, PassKey customers will be asked to contact the NTTA and open a TollTag account at no additional charge. The PassKey Customer Service Center will manage closing accounts for PassKey after October 1. M-Commerce (McDonalds) and Pegasus Parking transactions will continue to be handled by PassKey.

The Airport will now be accessible to more than 12,000 PassKey drivers as well as NTTA's customer base of more than 750,000 users. Today's announcement also opens hundreds of miles of Texas highways to more convenient use by travelers, and demonstrates the continued support of a regional transportation system cited as a strategic priority by leaders across North Texas.

"The North Texas Commission is honored to participate in such a great event commemorating the use of TollTags for DFW International Airport," said John Carpenter, Chairman, North Texas Commission and vice president, corporate affairs, American Airlines. "The NTC, along with DFW Airport Board staff, the NTTA staff and several vendors have been working for some time to arrive at this point. The interoperability of TollTags among and between tollways, airports and parking garages is a stellar example of regional cooperation in North Texas at its best."

About NTTA: Visit the NTTA web site at www.ntta.org or call 214 461 2000 for additional information about the North Texas Tollway Authority's TollTag® program, Interoperability, the On-line TollTag Store, the Tag Wagon, and the Dallas North Tollway System that includes the DNT, the PGBT, the Addison Toll Tunnel and the Mountain Creek Lake Bridge.

About NTC: The North Texas Commission is a regional non-profit team of businesses, cities, counties, chambers of commerce, economic development entities and higher education institutions in the North Texas Region. NTC is the one and only public-private regional organization committed to enhancing the overall economic vitality and quality of life of the North Texas Region. The North Texas Commission improves the economy, infrastructure and lifestyle of North Texas by leading and directing regionally cooperative initiatives to accomplish objectives in four primary areas: transportation, aviation, environment and long-range strategies. Visit NTC's web site at www.ntc-dfw.org.

Editor's Notes: This release, and past news releases issued by DFW International Airport, are available online at www.dfwairport.com in the "MediaSite" section.

For the latest news, real-time flight information, parking availability or further details regarding the many services provided at DFW International Airport, log on to www.dfwairport.com. To arrange interviews contact DFW Public Affairs at 972 574 NEWS (6397) or Ken Capps, APR, Vice President Public Affairs, kcapps@dfwairport.com To obtain copies of this photo please contact Star Ormand at sormand@dfwairport.com.