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Negotiators agree on 10-year highway plan
The bill’s prime sponsor, House Public Works and Highways Committee Chair Rep. David Campbell, D-Nashua, said the plan is heavy on maintenance and preservation of the current infrastructure and light on new projects.
The $15.6 million project to widen Route 101 for two miles from Route 114 and Boynton Street intersection has been a top priority for the area but until this year has not been a priority in the 10-year plan.
The plan also addresses replacing the Sarah Mildred Long Bridge in Portsmouth, which is the state’s No. 1 red-listed bridge. The bridge needs to be replaced and the shipping lane widened to accommodate the next generation of freight tankers carrying oil, propone, salt and other products into Portsmouth Harbor.
Under the plan, the state would issue Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicles or GARVEE bonds to pay for its share of the work on the bridge, and use about $50 million in federal grant money earmarked for the bridge to continue work on the I-93 expansion and $8 million of the federal money for widening Route 101 in Bedford.
The 10-year plan takes $1.2 million a year earmarked for guard rail replacement and uses it for secondary road rehabilitation projects, and redirects $1.1 million for turnpike exit renumbering to paving projects on rural roads.
The House and Senate will vote on the conference committee report next week.
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