THORNTON, Colo. (CBS4)– Drivers heading into the Denver metro area southbound on Interstate 25 could have an easier commute after an express lane opened on Monday morning.

The new lane is in place from 120th on the north end to the interchange with Highway 36 and I-270. During the morning commute the express lane will continue south to Union Station.

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In the afternoon the gates will close and the express lane will run northbound between 120th to 70th Avenue.

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The Colorado Department of Transportation estimates with the new express lane the average commute time will drop four minutes per vehicle. For drivers who pay for the express lane that could jump to a 20-minute drive time drop.

The cost for the express lane remains a subject of debate. Drivers can enjoy the express lanes without paying a toll for a few weeks to test the equipment that reads license plates and transponders.

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There is a town hall scheduled for May 2 in which the fee scale for the express lane will be discussed. A preliminary report has the tolls ranging from $1 to $3 depending on the volume of traffic and time of day.