D.C. speed limits to increase as early as next week

The drive through some parts of the District will soon go a little faster. Mayor Vincent Gray announced Friday a plan to raise the speed limit slightly on parts of Benning Road NE and I-295.

For are motorists who complain the city’s becoming just one big speed trap, the mayor said he’s heard them and he’s raising some speed limits.

“It will also likely have people not feel they are driving through speed traps,” says Gray.

Speed limits are going up on two roads with speed cameras: From 30 mph to 35 mph on Benning Road between Oklahoma and Kennilworth avenues NE, to 50 mph on every part of Interstate 295 from Eastern where it enters D.C. to Blue Plains where it leaves.

I-295, in particular, has several speed limits ranging from 40 mph to 50 mph. At the DMV where drivers pay those speeding tickets, most like the idea of higher speed limits.

AAA, which has led the way in criticizing speed cameras, said this is a step in the right direction.

“The approach that they’re looking at is based on signs and engineering and not on people making a political decision so speeds should be set at safe and reasonable speeds that are rational,” says John Townsend.

The speeds could change as early as next week.