I-95/Route 1 Toll Amnesty Program to Begin October 1

The Delaware Division of Motor Vehicles will be offering a three-month amnesty program for toll violators to resolve their toll debt for a fraction of the cost. Senate Joint Resolution 5, passed by the Delaware General Assembly, established the toll amnesty program for eligible toll violations on Route 1 and I-95. Anyone with outstanding toll violations incurred on Route 1 or I-95 between January 1, 2014 and April 30, 2020 is eligible to participate in the toll amnesty program. From October 1 through December 31, 2021, civil penalties will be waived for outstanding toll violations if tolls due plus an amnesty fee are paid.

Starting October 1, letters will be mailed to the registered owners of approximately 640,000 vehicles with unpaid toll violations and civil penalties to notify them of the waiver period. Those with outstanding violations are strongly encouraged to take advantage of this unique amnesty program, which will only be offered for a limited time. To participate in this program or for more information, visit de.gov/tollamnesty for Frequently Asked Questions, online payment portal access, support resources, and more.

Governor John Carney, who signed the legislation creating the toll amnesty program on Friday, commented, “This 90-day toll amnesty program will help DelDOT collect unpaid tolls and provide relief for motorists who have outstanding violations from traveling I-95 and Route 1. These programs have been successful in resolving these debts in other states, and I encourage anyone with violations to take advantage of this opportunity.”

“The tolls on Route 1 are there to help cover the cost of keeping our roads safe and in good working order. Unfortunately, close to $143 million owed by toll scofflaws is now going uncollected with some drivers facing thousands of dollars in fines and fees for $1 violations,” said Senator Stephanie Hansen, D-Middletown, the prime sponsor of Senate Joint Resolution 5. “I want to thank DelDOT Secretary Nicole Majeski, Controller General Ruth Ann Jones, and Governor John Carney for working with me and others to create a three-month amnesty program that will have a positive impact for all parties involved.”

Jana Simpler, Director of the Delaware Division of Motor Vehicles, said “Through this program, eligible participants have the opportunity to settle their accounts for a fraction of the amount owed. In preparation, please ensure your current vehicle registration address on file with the Division is accurate.”

After December 31, 2021, full resolution of any outstanding toll violations will require payment of all civil penalties.

Route 1 and I-95 register 70.6 million toll transactions annually, and about one million of those result in a violation. Of those violations, about 623,000 motorists have between one and ten violations.

DelDOT Celebrates Phase II Capital City Trail Completion

This afternoon, DelDOT’s Secretary Nicole Majeski, DNREC Division of Parks and Recreation Director Ray Bivens, Representative Lyndon D. Yearick, City of Dover’s Councilman Andre Boggerty, county and local officials participated in a ribbon cutting ceremony for the completion of Phase II-Capital City Trail.

“With each completed phase of work the Capital City Trail we move closer to completing what will ultimately be a nearly 15-mile trail around the city of Dover,” said Secretary of Transportation Nicole Majeski. “Building this interconnectivity gives our residents a safe and convenient alternative to using a vehicle to get around the city and surrounding areas and we are excited for the benefits this will provide to users of all ages.”

“DNREC has enjoyed and looks forward to continuing a great working relationship with DelDOT in developing trails throughout the state that bring more and more people in touch with Delaware’s natural beauty and recreational resources,” said Ray Bivens, Director of the DNREC Division of Parks and Recreation. “We cannot endorse strongly enough the expansion of the trail network across the state, thus providing public access to more opportunities for both recreational pursuits and alternative transportation.”

Representative Andria Bennett said, “Delaware’s wide array of pristine multi-use trails have proven to be a great success, allowing residents to experience the beauty of our state while enjoying the great outdoors. With the completion of the Capital City Trail, which runs through the heart of historic Kent County, our community will be connected in a way that benefits locals, visitors, and businesses alike. I’m grateful for DelDOT’s commitment to expanding and improving this important trail, which showcases the vitality of our area while providing people of all backgrounds with an environmentally friendly mode of transportation.”

“I want to thank DelDOT’s efforts to improve the pedestrians and bikers’ safety on the road. Throughout the state, we need to make a conscientious effort to improve the safety of our roads, and this is a step forward in central Kent County,” said Representative Lyndon D. Yearick.

Mayor Tracy Torres said, “I think it’s fantastic to have a trail providing accessibility to the parks and historic attractions in this area as well as the Dover Air Force Base. This provides options for those who desire a healthy lifestyle, it’s a safe way for families to explore the area. I’m very happy this connection will soon include Camden.”

Phase II-Capital City Trail is a new multi-use path along Route 10 from Gateway Shopping Center to South State Street for pedestrians and cyclists. This work included the following: sidewalks, transit improvements, ADA curbs, gutters, paving, fencing, signage, and landscaping. The section of this trail is part of the overall Capital City Trail which connects Downtown Dover, Camden/Wyoming, DAFB Housing, Brecknock Park, Caesar Rodney High School, Schutte Park, Danner Campus, and points between.

The entire length of the trail once complete will be approximately 14.5 miles in length. The remaining section of the trail from South State Street to US 13 is scheduled to be constructed in conjunction with the Camden Bypass Project. The pathway is another example of additional to our low stress multi-model network. The next phase of the trail is scheduled to begin next year from South State Street to a connection point with the Camden Bypass. The state of Delaware has more than 500 miles of pedestrian and bicycle trails.

Vote Georgetown Lewes Trail and Junction and Breakwater Pathway into 2021 Rail – Trail Hall of Fame

There are only a few more days before voting ends on August 6, 2021! Vote the Georgetown to Lewes Trail (GLT) & Junction and Breakwater Pathway (JBP) into this year’s Rails-to-Trails Conservancy’s (RTC) Hall of Fame!

The Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) and the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) are excited to announce the GLT and JBP are one of only three rail-trails to be nominated! Nominated as a pair, if selected, these Delaware treasures would join more than 30 other iconic trails that are nationally recognized in the Rail-Trail Hall of Fame.

Show your support and vote today. Just click HERE or visit https://de.gov/HOFVOTE. Vote as often as you like through August 6, 2021. Voting is unlimited! The winner, to be unveiled later this summer, will receive special Hall of Fame signage for their trail, a feature in RTC’s Trailblog, and an article in the fall issue of their magazine.

“If you utilize any one of the trails in the state’s ever-expanding trail network, I encourage you to vote and often,” said Secretary of Transportation Nicole Majeski. “Not only would it be amazing for two of our most popular trails to receive national recognition, but it also is a reminder of what we are looking to achieve here at DelDOT and in the state. Our goal remains to conveniently connect people to the places they want to go. Whether that is work, school, a doctor’s appointment or to their favorite restaurant or shopping destination, we want to make sure our residents and visitors have options, alternative modes of transportation they can use to reach their destinations.”

“Having Delaware’s incredible trail system recognized by the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy is a great honor for our state,” said DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin. “Many Delawareans and visitors who utilize our trails benefit through healthier lifestyles and enjoying our state’s natural resources, and we are proud these trails have gained national recognition.”

The Georgetown to Lewes Trail is easily one of the most celebrated pathways in Delaware. Since the completion of the first phase, the Georgetown to Lewes Trail has quickly become a favorite for residents and tourists alike. Trail enthusiasts can walk or bike to work, school, appointments, parks, restaurants, retail shops or numerous other destinations including the State’s breathtaking beaches. Approximately one million users a year choose to travel the Georgetown to Lewes Trail vs. utilize a motorized vehicle to reach their destination.

Another beloved trail, the Junction & Breakwater Pathway offers a 14-mile round trip connection between the historic Town of Lewes and Rehoboth Beach. Like with many coastal communities conventional travel during the peak season can be challenging but thanks to this low stress, multi-model pathway pedestrians and bicyclists can ditch their vehicles without sacrificing an ounce of adventure. Less traffic means more time to explore, shop, dine and experience these truly unique destinations.

The GLT is currently half-way finished. This year construction will begin on two additional sections. Once complete the trail will create a 16.7-mile connection between the heart of Sussex County, Georgetown, and the historic Town of Lewes. Users of the JBP continue to praise the recently completed Rehoboth Beach Extension. Both trails are state maintained, and DelDOT and DNREC are always looking for ways to update facilities and improve trail safety. For more information on either trail, visit DelDOT.gov or dnrec.alpha.delaware.gov.

Rails-to-Trails Conservancy began recognizing exemplary rail-trails across the country in 2007. Rail-Trail Hall of Fame inductees are selected on merits such as scenic value, high use, trail and trailside amenities, historical significance, excellence in management and maintenance of facility, community connections and geographic distribution. For more details and to vote click HERE or visit https://de.gov/HOFVOTE. Voting is unlimited. Voting ends at 11:59 p.m. ET on August 6, 2021.

DelDOT Highlights Ongoing Litter Cleanup Efforts

In the ongoing effort to “Keep DE Litter Free” the Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT) continues to dedicate resources to cleaning up our roads. To date in 2021, nearly 16,000 bags of trash have been collected, and last year, cleanup efforts resulted in the collection of over 51,000 bags of trash.

Litter cleanup across the state is performed by DelDOT Maintenance & Operations employees, Adopt-A-Highway/Sponsor-A-Highway efforts, the Work A Day Earn A Pay Program and with help from the Delaware Department of the Corrections’ (DOC) inmate work program.

In addition, more than 6,800 tires, 3,500 signs and 250 appliances were removed from alongside Delaware roads.

Governor John Carney, who has championed the “Keep DE Litter Free” initiative commented, “The amount of litter on our roads continues to be eye-opening and a reminder that we all need to do our part to reduce littering. We’re making progress and my hope is that these efforts, increased fines, new signage, and the plastic bag ban will all help curb the amount of litter we are seeing throughout our beautiful state.”

“Even with reduced traffic on our roads for a significant amount of time in the past year, our litter problem has persisted,” said Secretary of Transportation Nicole Majeski. “We are committed to reducing the amount of litter along our roads and I am grateful to our employees, partners, and volunteers who continue to work hard collecting litter across the state.”

The Keep DE Litter Free effort is one of several designed to keep Delaware outdoor living spaces free of trash and more enjoyable for all. As of Jan. 1, 2021, plastic carryout bags have been replaced by paper and reusable bags at checkout in many stores throughout Delaware. The law is designed to reduce beach and roadside litter, save landfill space, increase recycling efforts.

“Each Delawarean uses about 434 plastic bags and that means nearly 2,400 tons of plastic bags end up in our landfills annually,” said DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin. “A decrease by the public of plastic carryout bags can mitigate a large portion of this waste and help our environment by reducing the amount plastic bags on our roads and waterways that can harm us and our wildlife.”

Retailers can choose to offer paper bags, or cloth bags, or a thicker type of plastic bag that is designed to be reusable. As before the law, plastic bags – as well as plastic wraps, plastic dry cleaning bags and plastic newspaper sleeves – must still be recycled only at the store. All reusable bags should be washed before the next shopping trip.

Consumers and retailers can find more information about the plastic bag ban at de.gov/bags. To discover how you can join the efforts to help Keep DE Litter Free visit de.gov/litterfree. Businesses and organizations interested in adopting or sponsoring a highway through DelDOT’s Adopt-A-Highway or Sponsor-A-Highway programs can apply now at DelDOT.gov.

The Delaware Bayshore Byway National Scenic Byway Designation Sign Unveiling

As part of this week’s Earth Day celebration, the Delaware Department of Transportation (DelDOT), the Delaware Tourism Office, Delaware Greenways, and the Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control (DNREC) are excited to announce the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has designated the Delaware Bayshore Byway as a National Scenic Byway.

Governor John Carney, DelDOT Secretary Nicole Majeski, DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin, Director of the Delaware Tourism Office Liz Keller and representatives from Delaware Greenways and tourism groups celebrated the designation with a gathering today to unveil a special sign recognizing the Byway as a National Scenic Byway at the Delaware National Estuarine Research Reserve’s St. Jones Reserve in Dover.

The FHWA, an agency of the U.S. Department of Transportation, approved 49 new designations to the America’s Byways® collection, including the Delaware Bayshore Byway. In total, 15 new All-American Roads and 34 new National Scenic Byways in 28 states were accepted into the National Scenic Byways Program.

“Delaware’s Bayshore Byway encompasses so much of our state’s unique natural and cultural heritage,” said Governor John Carney. “We are proud to announce on Earth Day this national recognition of its beauty and importance, and we look forward to drawing new visitors to discover its uniquely all-American, all-natural waterways, landscapes and towns.”

Delaware Department of Transportation Secretary of Transportation Nicole Majeski added, “This designation is quite an honor. There is so much to experience when traveling this scenic route. Whether you’re a history lover, wildlife enthusiast or perhaps you just want to slow down and enjoy the view, enrich your next trip by taking the Delaware Bayshore Byway. You won’t be disappointed.”

“DNREC’s Delaware Bayshore Initiative runs the coastline from New Castle to Lewes and has laid a foundation to focus our efforts on conservation and preservation, provide recreational and educational opportunities, and support Bayshore communities,” said DNREC Secretary Shawn M. Garvin. “This new designation builds on and broadens our commitment to care for and share Delaware’s wild side with residents and visitors of today and tomorrow.”

The Delaware Bayshore Byway, now a National Scenic Byway, is a series of two-lane roads that travel along the Delaware River and Bay Estuary. From New Castle to Lewes, the byway corridor with 19 Discovery Zones offers visitors and locals an intimate experience featuring coastal marshlands, abundant wildlife, rich hunting, fishing, and farming heritage and historic river and bay towns and communities.

While traveling this 157-mile route spanning 100 miles of the Delaware coastline, the Delaware Bayshore Byway provides a connection to all that is Delaware: history, wild open space, horseshoe crabs and shorebirds, fresh and saltwater marshes, small communities, fishing villages and large farms, coastal rivers, the bay and its beaches, lighthouses and dark skies, historic mansions and migrant shacks, and waterfowl and watermen.

“The Delaware Bayshore is a special place that must be preserved for its world class birding and unique coastal marshes that benefits both Delaware residents and visitors,” said U.S. Senator Tom Carper. “The Delaware Bayshore is a treasure of national and global significance; recognition of the Byway at the federal level is an honor the area richly deserves.”

U.S. Senator Chris Coons said, “Delaware’s Bayshore Byway is a treasure and one of the most beautiful roads in the busy and populated Mid-Atlantic, some lucky few from outside of Delaware already know about the corridor as the best way to get to the beach or to visit one of our many small coastal towns.”

“Delaware’s Bayshore Byway is a Delaware treasure, encompassing so much of our rich history, culture, and, of course, Delaware’s natural scenery,” added Representative Lisa Blunt Rochester. “The byway has so much to offer as it runs through all three counties with incredible Discovery Zones along the way. I was pleased to hear about its new designation as a National Scenic Byway and hope that it brings new visitors to see the wonders of our state.”

“Outdoor activities are among the most popular reasons more than 9.2 million people visit Delaware each year,” said Liz Keller, director of the Delaware Tourism Office. “Whether it’s world-class birding at Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge or the quiet beauty of southern Delaware, the Delaware Bayshore Byway is an ideal way for visitors and residents to explore Delaware’s natural wonders.”

Must-see destinations along the Bayshore Byway:
• Historic City of New Castle
• First State National Historical Park
• New Castle Court House Museum
• George Read II House and Gardens
• Historic Delaware City
• Fort Delaware, Pea Patch Island
• Chesapeake & Delaware Canal Area
• Thousand Acre Marsh
• Augustine Wildlife Area
• Port Penn Interpretive Center
• Historic Town of Odessa
• Cedar Swamp Wildlife Area
• Blackbird Creek Reserve
• Woodland Beach Wildlife Area
• DE Aquatic Resources Education Center
• Bombay Hook National Wildlife Refuge
• Town of Leipsic
• Town of Little Creek
• Community of Pickering Beach
• Air Mobility Command Museum
• Community of Pickering Beach
• John Dickinson Plantation
• St. Jones Reserve
• Community of Kitts Hummock
• Historic Town of Bowers Beach
• Bowers Beach Maritime Museum
• Historic Town of Magnolia
• Historic Town of Frederica
• Community of South Bowers
• Milford Neck Wildlife Area
• Milford Historic District and Riverwalk
• DuPont Nature Center at Mispillion Harbor
• Town of Slaughter Beach
• Marvel Salt Marsh Preserve
• Prime Hook National Wildlife Refuge
• Community of Broadkill Beach
• Historic Town of Milton
• Historic Lewes Byway: Gateway to the Bayshore

“Delaware Greenways on behalf of DelDOT, the Delaware Tourism Office and DNREC would like to thank the Byway Management Team for their hard work, dedication and for their input during the completion of the Corridor Management Plan Update 2020 and National Scenic Byway application,” said Chair of the Byway Management Team Steve Borleske.

Discover more about the Delaware Bayshore Byway, other Delaware Byways and the Corridor Management Plan at DelDOT.gov. Encounter more adventures throughout the state at visitdelaware.com.

For more information on how Delaware Greenways is linking and building communities while winding through some of the most beautiful scenery in the state, visit delawaregreenways.org.

To learn more about DNREC’s work to preserve our outdoor heritage and open spaces, visit dnrec.de.gov/bayshore.

For a list of all the 2021 Designations to America’s Byways® visit the FHWA’s National Scenic Byways Program website.