The reason Knoxville wants to (or has..I don’t know) lower speed limits along I-40 is not for safety but in an attempt to reduce emssions so they can acquire federal funding for that stupid Orange Route. The air is too polluted to qualify for federal funding to destroy Harden Valley..I mean, build the useless road.
June 2005 is the deadline for air quality issues. The Long-Range Plan (LRP) must be met in order to get Federal funding. The LRP is updated every three years. [Source]
Wonder if they made it. Hey! Knoxville was part of the 1914 Dixie Highway. It befuddles me why Knoxville is so shortsighted as to try to steer commerce away from this wonderful downtown everyone wants to create. Not really, I understand that the 5 interchanges planned along I475 will make some political good ol’ boys some big cash while destroying some beautiful scenic countryside and historic caves for a matter of 24 miles of road. Think about the fortune we are spending to reduce travel time by about 15 minutes.
Hmm. Having read over the Knoxville Parkway information I can see why some of the arguments for the Orange Route are compelling. Still, I think it probably will turn out to be one of those things that looks better on paper than in reality. Let’s hope I’m just not turning into a curmudgeon because I think I’m too young for that. Anyhow, back to my point! Higher speeds make safer highways!
In 2005, according to new data from the National Highway Safety Administration, the rate of injuries per mile traveled was lower than at any time since the Interstate Highway System was built 50 years ago. The fatality rate was the second lowest ever, just a tick higher than in 2004.
As a public policy matter, this steady decline is a vindication of the repeal of the 55 miles per hour federal speed limit law in 1995.
Of the 31 states that have raised their speed limits to more than 70 mph, 29 saw a decline in the death and injury rate and only two–the Dakotas–have seen fatalities increase.