The Downbeach Express, the causeway which connects Margate with Northfield, is increasing its toll by 25¢ on Wednesday, June 1. Drivers paying cash will now be charged $2.25 per trip to travel the two miles of roadway.

If you use the Express Pass card, your discounted fare will increase to $1.65 per trip.

In a news release, Mike Lentz from Ole Hansen and Sons said the toll increase is the first since 2019 and is needed to maintain the four bridges and the roadway that make up the route.

“The Downbeach Express is an important access way for thousands of area residents and visitors,” Lentz said in the release. “It is our responsibility to ensure their safety, and to ensure that the bridges and roadway remain operational.”

According to the Margate Library, the Margate Bridge was initially constructed in the 1930s after the Commissioners of Margate City passed laws to allow a private toll drawbridge across the back bays between Margate and the mainland.

Jerome Ave was widened and paved to provide better access to the proposed Margate bridge.

When it opened, the toll was 5 cents.

In 1964, the Margate Bridge stock was auctioned off in Federal Court. The Capaldi Family and the Hansen Family submitted the highest bid and acquired the Margate Bridge.

In 2003, the bridge toll was 25¢.

By 2016, the price to cross the Margate Causeway had jumped to $1.75. In 2019, the price increased to $2., with a 30% discount of $1.40 for people using Express Pass.

As regular travelers of Downbeach Express, my 2-car family paid more than $1600 in tolls on the Margate causeway in 2021.

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