Speed limits going up

West Texas speed limit signs

If you have a lead foot, then you’ll love this news.

First, if you hadn’t heard already, the Legislature earlier this year approved– and the governor signed– a bill that would raise the statutory maximum speed limit for state highways to 75 mph (excluding, of course, the existing 80 mph speed limit on some sections of I-10 and I-20 out in West Texas.) Texas now joins all but a handful of states west of the Mississippi with a 75 mph top speed.  The limit can only be increased on roads where an engineering study determines that it’s safe to do so, but if past practice holds true, that should be the majority of roads that are currently capped at 70 mph.

Even better, the bill finally eliminates the matrix of speed limits for daytime/nighttime and cars/trucks.  All speed limits will now apply to all vehicles at all times.  Texas was the only state to still have a different nighttime limit and one of the few with a separate limit for trucks.

The new law takes effect September 1st.  A separate effort to increase the maximum speed to 85 mph died.

More recently, the speed limit on the northern arc of Loop 410 has gone up from 60 mph to 65 mph.  With the recent completion of construction to widen the freeway to 10 lanes, TxDOT completed a speed study that showed the 85th percentile speed being 65 mph, so in accordance with agency engineering guidelines, TxDOT asked the City of San Antonio to officially increase the speed limit to 65 mph north of US 90.  Signs went up this past week.

I also recently noticed that the speed limit along Loop 1604 south of Braun Rd. increased from 55 mph to 60 mph.


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