Lawmaker Ponders Free Mass Pike Rides Through Sturbridge on Thanksgiving

A proposal before the Massachusetts legislature would look at stopping Thanksgiving toll collections at one busy turnpike interchange. 

State Rep. Anne Gobi of Spencer wants the transportation department to study the impact of halting turkey day toll collections at the Sturbridge interchange. That’s where the Mass Pike and interstate 84 meet.

Gobi says the bill was drafted by students at Tantasqua High School.

“They were also looking at it from the less time that cars are idling and adding to pollution and just get them through and keep the traffic moving,” Gobi says.

A spokesperson for the state transportation department says they have not taken a position on the bill. But she notes that Thanksgiving is actually among the least busy days on the Turnpike – with most folks traveling before and after holidays.

The legislature held a hearing on Gobi’s bill last month. But the representative says it may all be moot, as the state is moving toward electronic tolling and eliminating all toll booths all the time.