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Facts at a Glance

  • Now completed and open to the public, the 495 Express Lanes project built four High-Occupancy Toll (HOT) lanes (two in each direction) on the Capital Beltway between the Springfield Interchange and just north of the Dulles Toll Road, a distance of 14 miles each way (28 miles total).
  • Cost: $1.4 billion
  • Start date: July 2008
  • Completion date: November 2012

NEW: 495 Express Lanes Corridor-wide Landscaping Plan

Overpass and Interchange Information Pages

Project Overview

The 495 Express Lanes lanes are tolled lanes that operate alongside existing highway lanes to provide users with a faster and more reliable travel option.

This project built fourteen miles of new 495 Express Lanes (two in each direction) on I-495 between the Springfield Interchange and just north of the Dulles Toll Road. These Express Lanes allow the Beltway to offer HOV-3 connections with I-95/395, I-66 and the Dulles Toll Road for the first time. Buses, carpools and vanpools with three or more people, and motorcycles can ride in the new lanes for free. Vehicles carrying one or two people can either travel for free in the Beltway's regular lanes, or pay a toll to ride in the Express Lanes. Toll prices for the 495 Express Lanes will change according to traffic conditions, which regulates demand for the lanes and keep them congestion free - even during peak hours.

In addition to providing new travel choices, this project also made a significant contribution to the Beltway’s 45-year-old infrastructure, replacing more than 50 aging bridges and overpasses, upgrading 10 interchanges and improving new bike and pedestrian access. 

The Partners

This project was made possible through a public-private partnership between the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) and Fluor - Transurban. The Virginia Department of Rail and Public Transportation (DRPT) also played an active role in the project, providing opportunities for expanded public transportation in the corridor. Fluor-Transurban financed, designed and built the project with environmental review and oversight from VDOT. Transurban now operates and maintains the 495 Express Lanes while VDOT continues to own the facility.

Public Involvement

The project was shaped by more than a decade of environmental studies, environmental review and public input. Go to Project Timeline (pdf) for more information. 

For More Information

Go to for more detailed project information and details on using the now-open 495 Express Lanes.

Project Benefits

All Motorists

All motorists benefit from the project, even if they do not choose to use the 495 Express Lanes. The 495 Express Lanes create a tremendous incentive to move more people through ride-sharing and buses, while better managing congestion on the general purpose lanes. This makes the Capital Beltway flow more efficiently and reduces cut-through traffic on local neighborhood streets. Commuters on the Capital Beltway can now spend less time in stop-and-start traffic, saving fuel and vehicle maintenance costs.


The project delivers a new HOV option to the Capital Beltway in Virginia, opening up new carpooling and slugging opportunities to Virginia’s largest employment center, Tysons Corner. The project has significantly expanded the regional HOV network and will link with the planned I-95 Express Lanes, I-66 and the Dulles Toll Road creating a 70-mile HOV/Bus/HOT lanes network.

Public Transportation Users

495 Express Lanes significantly improves the opportunity for reliable bus service on the Capital Beltway in Virginia for the first time, providing free-flowing access for buses into Tysons Corner and other activity centers.

The Community

The project supports the region’s continued economic prosperity, unclogging one of the busiest commuter routes in the nation and providing greater access to busy activity centers such as Tysons Corner and Merrifield. 495 Express Lanes will keep traffic moving efficiently on the Capital Beltway keep through-traffic out of local neighborhoods.

Because 495 Express Lanes provide incentives to use buses or carpools and create smoother traffic flow, the environment will benefit from reduced vehicle emissions.

Public-Private Partnership

By partnering with the private sector to build 495 Express Lanes, Virginia was able to move forward on this project much more quickly than would have been possible using traditional funding and construction methods.  The 495 Express Lanes project capitalized on the best technology, financing methods, engineering and innovation. Go to for more detailed project information.


Click here for public records, presentations and other detailed information.

I-495 Interchange Fact Sheets

Visit the I-495 Fact Sheet Page for updated info.


Media Contact:
Michelle Holland
Communications Director,
Virginia Megaprojects
703-259-3378 office
703-586-0487 cell

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