Speed Limits in New York State


Current Speed Limit Information from the NYS MUTCD
(Part 212)

Please note that information contained below is strictly for educational and informational purposes. Any person associated with this website assumes absolutely no responsibility for the information contained herein.

212.3 Maximum Speed Limit Signs
R2-1
R2-1
R2-2
R2-2
R2-3
R2-3
R2-1
R2-4
R2-2
R2-5
R2-3
R2-6

Graphics above created by webmaster. All signs use Series E numerals. Signs R2-2 through R2-6 use Series F for first three lines, except R2-5 which uses Series E for the first line. R2-1 uses Series E letters.

  1. Application. Critera for use of maximum speed limit signs are described in sections 212.1 and 212.2.
    1. The R2-1 sign shall be used for posting linear speed limits.
    2. Except as provided in paragraph (7) of this subdivision, the R2-2 sign shall be used for posting the statewide speed limit.
    3. The R-3 sign shall be used for posting an area speed limit which involves only a portion of a municipality.
    4. The R2-4, R2-5 and R2-6 signs shall be used for posting area speed limits which are essentially city-wide, village-wide and town-wide respectively. These signs should be used even where there are specific highways or smaller areas (for example, a village within a town) where different speed limits apply.
    5. Where a linear speed limit within an area speed limit has the same numerical value as the area speed limit (a situation which can exist because of legal requirements), the appropriate area speed limit sign (R2-3 through R2-6) shall be substituted for the R2-1 sign in posting the linear limit.
    6. Where United States or New York numbered touring routes are on highways subject to area speed limits, such highways should be posted on a linear basis with the appropriate area speed limit sign (R2-3 through R2-6). However, these signs may be omitted within heavily developed urban areas (for example, the central business district of a city).
    7. R2-1 signs may be used instead of R2-2 signs to post the statewide speed limit on a section of highway in a work zone where a speed limit in excess of the statewide limit has been temporarily reduced to the statewide limit.
    8. R2-1 signs posting a speed limit in a work zone may be supplemented with R7-12 signs indicating that fines imposed for violating the work zone speed limit are higher than those imposed for violating other speed limits.
  2. Legend. The word "AREA" in the R2-3 sign may be replaced by other generic legend (for example, "CAMPUS", "PLAZA" or "PARK") where it would more clearly and appropriately identify a physically defined area.
  3. Location.
    1. General. Maximum speed limit signs shall be installed at or near the places where speed limits change. For linear speed limits, additional signs are required at intervals throughout the length of the restriction. For area limits, additional signs within the area are not required. However, in extensive or complex areas, interior signs may be desirable to remind motorists of the speed limit.
    2. Linear speed limits.
      1. An R2-1 sign shall be placed at, or as near as practicable to, the beginning of a linear speed limit facing traffic entering the restriction. This sign may be omitted where the beginning is at, or near, the closed end of a dead-end highway. Where the beginning is at, or just before, an intersection, the sign should be placed beyond the intersection. Where there is a community identification sign at the beginning, the speed limit sign should be placed beyond the identification sign.
      2. Additional R2-1 signs shall be placed at intervals throughout restrictions longer than 1100 feet. They should be suitably placed to remind motorists on the highway, as well as inform motorists entering the highway, of the speed limit. Signs should be placed beyond, rather than immediately in advance of, intersections or locations where reduced speed may be necessary. Spacing between successive signs should not exceed the values in table 212-1.
        TABLE 212-1
        Linear Speed Limit Sign Spacing
        Numerical Limit
        (Miles Per Hour)
        Maximum Spacing for Intermediate Signs (feet)
        First Intermediate Sign Subsequent Intermediate Signs
        25 1100 2500
        30 1100 3000
        35 1100 3500
        40 1100 4000
        45 1100 4500
        50 1100 5000
      3. An appropriate speed limit sign (R2-1 through R2-6) shall be placed at, or as near as practiable to, the end of a linear speed limit. This sign is the initial sign for the speed limit which follows. This sign should be omitted where the speed limit ends at, or near, the end of the highway (a dead-end, or at a "T" intersection).
    3. Area speed limits.
      1. An appropriate area speed lmit sign (R2-3 through R2-6) shall be placed facing traffic on each highway entering the area restriction. Where this point is at, or just before, an intersection, signs should be placed beyond the intersection on all highways on which the area limit applies. Where there is a community identification sign at the same location, the speed limit sign should be placed beyond the identification sign.
      2. Where a highway within an area has a higher or lower speed limit, area speed limit signs shall be placed on each street intersecting that highway, facing traffic entering the area restriction.
      3. Where a smaller area with a different limit exists within an area, the two should be treated as separate areas having a common boundary.
      4. Additional area speed limit signs may be placed within an area to remind motorists of the speed limit. Such signs should not be placed immediately in advance of intersections or in locations where they would conflict with other traffic signs.
      5. An appropriate speed limit sign (R2-1 through R2-6) shall be placed facing traffic on each highway leaving the area restriction. This sign is the initial sign for the speed limit which follows. Where this point is at, or just before, an intersection, signs should be placed at suitable locations beyond the intersection on all highways on which the area limit does not apply. Where the intersecting highway has a linear speed limit, the normal linear posting may be adequate for this purpose.
    4. State-wide speed limit.
      1. An R-2 sign should be placed on highways entering the State on which the statewide speed limit applies. When a State boundary sign is in place, the R2-2 sign should be placed beyond the State boundary sign.
      2. R2-2 signs shall be placed at the ends of linear restrictions when the State-wide limit follows.
      3. Where a highway subject to the statewide limit is within, or adjacent to, an area speed limit, R2-2 signs shall be placed at suitable locations on that highway to inform motorists leaving the area restriction that the State-wide limit applies. Where the highway is a freeway, the R2-2 signs should be placed on its mainline roadways beyond the entrance ramps, rather than on the entrance ramps.
      4. In addition to the uses prescribed in subparagraphs (i), (ii) and (iii) of this paragraph, the R2-2 sign may be used as necessary to inform, or remind, motorists of the State-wide speed limit (for example, on highways subject to the State-wide limit adjacent to large airports).
      5. Under certain conditions, an R2-11 end speed zone sign may be used instead of an R2-2 sign to post the end of a linear or area restriction. The conditions under which this substitution may be made are described in section 212.7 of this part.
  4. Illustrations. Figures 222-3 and 222-4 show examples of speed limit posting (not included within this website, please refer to the NYS MUTCD).
  5. Supplemental and related devices. School speed limit signs, speed zone ahead signs, end speed zone sign, R7-1, R7-2 and R7-12 supplementary regulatory signs, school sign, work zone sign and flashing beacon.