The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission issued $231.4 million in bonds to refund a previous issuance.
The commission sold the bonds at a floating rate, with a mandatory purchase on July 15, 2026 and a maturity date of July 14, 2041. The securities received a rating of A1 from Moody’s Investors Service, AA- from S&P Global Ratings, and AA- from Fitch Ratings.
The rating reflects the commission’s “critical role in the broader transportation system, ability and willingness to raise tolls, history of prudent cost management, and a strong liquidity position, all of which somewhat mitigate its sizable debt burden and capital plan,” according to Fitch.
The issuance comes as the commission modernizes the turnpike’s tolling infrastructure. In 2025, the turnpike will begin collecting tolls via cameras that capture a vehicle’s license plate, a system known as open-road tolling. The project, which began in 2011, is expected to cost $640 million by its completion at the end of the decade. The commission expects that electronic tolling will save $75 million annually.
Meanwhile, the commission plans to increase tolls each year until 2050, with higher rates for commercial vehicles, which account for almost half of turnpike revenue.
Proceeds from the issuance will refund a series of bonds originally sold in 2005.
The bonds are limited obligations of the commission, payable by revenue from tolls, fees, and other income associated with the turnpike.
Stifel, Nicolaus & Company served as lead underwriter on the issuance, purchasing the bonds for $230.6 million. The price reflected a discount of almost $800,000.