As construction continues along Interstate 93, many residents are wondering just how far the project has come and how much longer it is expected to last.
In order to address these questions, Wendy Johnson and Dan Prehemo, representatives with the New Hampshire Department of Transportation (NHDOT), came before the Town Council during their July 10 meeting to give a presentation on the progress they have made.
Johnson began by reminding the council of what the project is setting out to accomplish and how far along they have come. The DOT’s primary goals have been to widen and reconstruct 20 miles of I-93 from the Massachusetts State Line to the I-293 split in Manchester, as well as reconstruct and modernize Exits 1 through 5, perform work on 45 bridges, construct five miles of sound wall at 12 locations along the corridor, and construct three new park and ride lots at Exits 2, 3, and 5.
The presentation noted that all early action projects and mainline priorities have been completed, these being projects revolving around Exits 1 through 3 and 5 and three lanes from Exit 3 South. Early action projects are considered standalone projects with independent utilities from the mainline, while mainline projects were more catered to sections of the corridor that needed the most attention. Johnson noted that they were “really making a lot of progress” in expanding and cleaning up these areas.
The DOT’s focus now is to address capacity improvements along the corridor, including establishing a park and ride along Exit 3, widening lanes from Exit 3 to Exit 5, and improving traffic control within these areas. Construction for these particular projects began in 2016 and are planned to be finished in 2020, costing the state about $208,000,000 overall.
The remainder of the presentation focused more specifically on Londonderry, such as the demolition of the Ash Street Bridge. Its deconstruction will take place over the next two years, but the DOT is being careful to store and eventually sell off anything with historic significance, including the Robert J. Prowse Memorial Bridge Plaque that was attached to the bridge.
Johnson also emphasized that the DOT is environmentally minded when it comes to their projects, noting that “they’ve reduced [their] salt by 20 percent” when referring to construction being done along Exit 4A.
Finally, Johnson emphasized work being done to Route 102, namely to treat various stretches of pavement, reset drainage structures and keep traffic flowing as smoothly as possible during the process. Although an exact schedule for the work has yet to be determined by the contractors, the project is expected to begin in July or early August and end sometime in the fall.
For more information, please visit RebuildingI93.com.