MGL c. 90 § 17C defines a thickly settled or business district as "the territory contiguous to any way which is built up with structures devoted to business, or the territory contiguous to any way where dwelling houses are situated at such distances as will average less than two hundred feet between them for a distance of a quarter of a mile or over."
*Please note that statutory speed limits only exist in the absence of special speed regulations. If a special speed regulation exists, that posted speed limit will always supersede a statutory speed limit within a thickly settled or business district.
MassDOT recommends that if a municipality opts-in to MGL c. 90 § 17C, that it does so on a city- or town-wide basis to avoid potential confusion for drivers. However, cities and towns do have the option to opt-in on a street-by-street basis. Once a municipality has opted-in to MGL c. 90 § 17C, it is required to notify MassDOT.
Municipalities that have notified MassDOT of opt-in
|Municipality||Opt-In Date||Area(s) Covered|
|Billerica||8/23/2017||Alpine Street from Brick Kiln Road to Boston Road|
|Billerica||9/6/2017||Old Elm Street from Franklin Street to Lowell Street
Faulkner Street (entirety)
Letchworth Avenue (entirety)
|Danvers||3/8/2018||Damon Street (entirety)
Chase Street (entirety)
Berry Street (entirety)
Alden Street (entirety)
Park Street from High Street to Lane Parkway
Hunt Street (entirety)
Porter Street (entirety)
Webb Street (entirety)
Bayview Avenue (entirety)
Riverside Avenue (entirety)
|Halifax||10/12/2017||Circuit Street (entirety)
Laurel Street (entirety)
|Leominster||4/17/2017||Beth Avenue from Willard Street to Central Street|