Keep up on the latest KTA news by reading our press releases below.
Customer and audit data affirm KTA’s current and future direction — Toll increase to help replenish reserves for future improvements
Nov 8, 2021
WICHITA, Kan.— The Kansas Turnpike Authority’s recent Fiscal Year 2021 audit along with results of its annual customer satisfaction survey indicate the organization is performing well and its direction continues to meet customer needs.
KTA’s latest annual report shows the organization retained the highest possible bond rating (Aa2) and its net position increased while long-term debt decreased in fiscal year ending June 30, 2021. Highlights of its annual customer satisfaction survey include 95% of customers being satisfied with the K-TAG program and 89% satisfied with condition of the roadway.
“By adjusting budget and project timelines, KTA was able to continue modernization efforts identified in its 2015 Long Term Needs Study,” KTA’s CEO Steve Hewitt said. “Having overcome many of the more immediate challenges created by the pandemic, KTA is once again focused on future improvements.”
On February 1, KTA will adjust toll rates to pay for future projects, replenish reserves used during the pandemic and entice additional customers to use K-TAG, KTA’s electronic toll collection program. Tolls will be adjusted in the following ways:
- The majority of customers, those using an electronic transponder to pay for tolls, will see an approximate 2% increase for inflation. Electronic customers can save up to 35% compared to cash tolls.
- Customers continuing to pay tolls with cash or card at the tollbooth will see an approximate 12% increase.
Customers who usually pay at a tollbooth and switch to the K-TAG program can pay less than what they currently pay. For example, a class 2 customer pays $15 at a tollbooth for a trip between KTA’s Southern and Eastern Terminals. Come February 2022, that customer’s toll would decrease to $11.35 with a K-TAG or, if continuing to pay at the tollbooth, increase to $16.75.
Many customers making short-range trips with a K-TAG will not see an increase due to past toll adjustments rounding to the nearest quarter. For example, the electronic toll rate for a passenger vehicle will remain unchanged for trips between K-15/Wichita and Andover (MM 45-57), East Topeka and West Lawrence (MM 183-202), East Wichita/Kellogg and S. El Dorado (MM 53-71).
The Kansas Turnpike receives no tax funding and relies on user-fees (tolls) to pay for operations and maintenance of the roadway.
In the past six years, KTA has invested more than $355 million to preserve, enhance and modernize the roadway based upon customer-feedback. Four years remain in the 10-year Long Term Needs Study plan, including converting the roadway to a cashless system in 2024.
“With 12% of the state’s economy relying on the Turnpike and 79% of drivers being very to completely satisfied with the value received for their toll payment, the Turnpike continues to be an asset to Kansas and its travelers,” said Hewitt. “Even with this toll adjustment, KTA remains one of the lowest tolls per mile in the country.”
KTA celebrates employee service anniversaries
Nov 5, 2021
WICHITA, Kan.— Each year, the Kansas Turnpike Authority recognizes employees and Kansas Highway Patrol troopers assigned to the Turnpike, who are celebrating years-of-service anniversaries. For 2021, KTA recognized 57 individuals that collectively have 915 years of service to the KTA.
Employees reaching service anniversaries include:
- Jim Crisler (Wichita), Toll Collector
- Mike Howerton (El Dorado), Senior Equipment Operator
- Barbara Sigley (Augusta), Toll Collector
- Preston Turner (El Dorado), Structures Superintendent
- Doug Walbridge (McLouth), Highway Maintenance Superintendent
- Clint Wichman (Silver Lake), Structures Foreman
- Mike Peterson (El Dorado), Toll Collector
- Mark Roberts (Douglass), Project Coordinator
- Cathy DeKruger (Topeka), Customer Service Representative
- Dallas Gilmore, Trooper
- Dee Jelley (Wichita), Customer Service Representative
- Tim Means (Derby), Computer Systems Administrator
- Jennifer Bledsoe (Carbondale), Toll Collector
- Jay Buckner (El Dorado), Structures Lead
- Mark Christesen, Trooper
- Kale Collins, Trooper
- Corey Davis, Trooper
- Mike Hamilton, Trooper
- Ryan Kufahl, Trooper
- Carley Lucas (Clearwater), Customer Service Representative
- Ryan Mosher, Trooper
- Amber North (Topeka), Assistant Toll Supervisor
- Barbara Ochs (Lawrence), Toll Collector
- Christina Rafols (Tonganoxie), Customer Service Representative
- Janice Rodriguez (Emporia), Toll Collector
- Mary Schaffer (Wellington), Toll Collector
- Tammy Swain (Maple Hill), Assistant Toll Supervisor
- Justin Wallace, Trooper
- Lorraine Bishop (Mulvane), Toll Collector
- Eric Murray, Trooper
- Debbie Overfelt (Wellington), Toll Collector
- Nathan Voss, Trooper
- David Wolgamuth (Wichita), Senior Toll Equipment Technician
- Tracy Bailly (Derby), Part Time Toll Collector
- Brian Boatright (Wichita), Utilities Superintendent
- Stewart Mitchell (Rose Hill), Senior Auto/Truck/Equipment Technician
- Lynda Schultz (Wellington), Toll Supervisor
- James Thayer (Mayfield), Part Time Toll Collector
- Mike Tullis (McLouth), Highway Maintenance Foreman
- Nathan Anstey (Americus), Project Coordinator
- Jeff Burkdoll (Lyndon), Equipment Operator
- Joshua Coffin (McLouth), Project Coordinator
- Kimberly Dana (Augusta), Accounts Receivable Specialist
- Rusty Davenport (Osage City), Highway Maintenance Lead
- Iain Deckard (Wichita), Image Review Manager
- Brian Harvey (Wichita), Roadside Maintenance Worker
- Melody Hawkins (Douglass), Executive Assistant
- Gloria Hildreth (Derby), Accountant
- Ben Leone (Emporia), Part Time Toll Collector
- Melissa Mitchell (Rose Hill), Audit Clerk
- Betty Schrader (Lawrence), Part Time Toll Collector
- Carter Smith (Augusta), Equipment Operator
- James Stauffer (El Dorado), Teller
- Sean Swords, Trooper
- Mitchell Wecker (Allen), Structures Lead
- Caleb Wilson, Trooper
- Daniel Wood (Wichita), Senior Web Developer
Contracts awarded on upcoming Turnpike projects
Nov 2, 2021
WICHITA, Kan.— The Kansas Turnpike Authority announces bids have been approved and contracts awarded on upcoming Turnpike construction projects.
Contract #7742 - For redecking and widening north and southbound mainline bridges at MM 41.437 (55th Street), 42.445 (Hydraulic Avenue), and 42.84 (47th Street) and construction of northbound and southbound cashless toll zones at MM 43.08, was awarded to Dondlinger & Sons Construction Co., Wichita, Kansas, for $9,179,847.53.
Contract #7829 - for painting eight bridges located between MM 86 and MM 170, in Butler, Chase, Lyon, Osage, and Shawnee Counties, was awarded to Lindner Painting, Inc., Lincoln, NB, for $413,300.
Three separate contracts were approved for the fabrication and delivery of overhead sign structures needed for cashless tolling as following:
- Contract 7884 for 12 overhead structures for locations from MM 56 to MM 73 was awarded to AMG Metals Inc., Sharon, Ontario, for $1,722,919.86.
- Contract 7886 for 12 overhead structures for locations from MM 187 to MM 202 and contract 7887 for 16 overhead sign structures from MM 131 to MM 210 to Metal Pros LLC, Wichita, KS for $1,352,020.00 and $1,658,420.00, respectively.
Construction details will be available closer to the start dates on http://www.ksturnpike.com with updates on this and other projects published monthly in KTA’s electronic newsletter. Sign up to receive the newsletter using the form at www.ksturnpike.com/communication.
KTA encourages teen driver safety — Contest videos released
Oct 18, 2021
WICHITA, Kan.— In celebration of National Teen Driver Safety Week, October 17-23, the Kansas Turnpike Authority shares the three winning videos from its recent Put the Brakes on Fatalities video contest. These videos were created by Kansas teens to raise awareness about dangerous driving habits. The winning three videos can be viewed online.
The winning videos were made by students from St. John-Hudson High School and Eudora High School.
“We love to see the thought and creativity that is put into these videos each year,” said Rachel Bell, KTA Director of Business Services & Customer Relations. “Teens are in their formative driving years, so creating videos is just one way we hope to instill safe driving behaviors in them.”
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, teen drivers are twice as likely as adult drivers to be involved in a fatal crash. Parents are highly encouraged to talk with their teen about safe driving practices, including seat belt usage and distracted driving.
KTA seeks customer input
Aug 23, 2021
WICHITA, Kan.— The Kansas Turnpike Authority invites the public to provide feedback on their Turnpike travel experience by participating in their annual Customer Satisfaction Survey. Anyone who uses the Turnpike, whether daily or occasionally, is encouraged to share their thoughts to help KTA prioritize future projects and make internal improvements.
“We’re a customer-driven organization,” said Steve Hewitt, KTA’s CEO. “Customer feedback helps drive our decisions for future projects. Cashless tolling will be arriving in 2024, and part of that decision was due to our customer’s changing expectations on how tolling works.”
The survey is open until September 30 at https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/CSS21NR.