According to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, department officials rejected a
plea from a citizens group to reduce the speed limit permanently to 45 mph, saying the 55 mph speed limit is safe.
Officials say keeping the temporary 45 mph limit "would create a safety hazard because it would encourage excessive passing and merging by motorists," said Leslie J. Fafard, director of the Waukesha district office of the department.
Speeds were reduced to 45 mph by the department in July to slow traffic while
Highway 164 was being resurfaced and to discourage trucks from using the two-lane road while Highway 45 was being repaved.
The Highway J Citizens Group tried to convince the department to keep the 45 mph limit, citing a reduction in traffic accidents in the first three months after the
limit was reduced. State officials, however, say such a short time period does not equal conclusive evidence. An ongoing study will eventually provide guidelines for a permanent speed limit.
Highway 164 formerly was known as Highway J.