Project Overview
Nashua - Merrimack - Bedford 13761

Southern Segment (Nashua and Merrimack)

Description: The southern segment begins approximately 2000 feet north of the Exit 8 overpass bridge in Nashua and runs northerly for approximately 1.5 miles, ending approximately 1000 feet south of the Exit 10 overpass bridge in Merrimack.

Click here for a map of the Southern Segment

FEET adjacent to Pennichuck Brook, viewing south

FEET adjacent to Pennichuck Brook
(viewing south)

Design Considerations

The two bridges over Pennichuck Brook may require widening and rehabilitation or reconstruction. Retaining walls may be required along the roadway approaches to the bridges to minimize impacts into the water. Pennichuck Brook is an environmentally sensitive area and is one of the drinking water sources for the City of Nashua. Careful attention to erosion control and stormwater management will be required.

A portion of the Exit 10 southbound on-ramp may require reconstruction, however the Exit 10 ramp toll plazas are not anticipated to be impacted.

Cost:  The cost of the southern segment, including engineering and right-of-way acquisition is estimated to be $14 million.

 

 

FEET crossing Pennichuck Brook, view northeast

FEET crossing Pennichuck Brook
(viewing northeast)

Middle Segment (Merrimack)

Description: The middle segment begins just north of the bridges over Continental Boulevard at Exit 11 and runs northerly for approximately 5.3 miles, ending approximately one mile south of the Bedford Toll Plaza. This segment includes the Exit 12 interchange and is entirely within Merrimack.

Click here for a map of the Middle Segment

FEET near Exit 11, view southeast

FEET near Exit 11
(viewing southeast)

 

Design Considerations

Portions of the Exit 11 northbound on-ramp and southbound off-ramp may require reconstruction.  Impacts are not anticipated to occur to the southbound on-ramp and northbound off-ramp and toll plazas at Exit 11.  The FEET bridge over the Souhegan River was reconstructed as part of a previous NHDOT project (Merrimack #12105), and is not anticipated to be impacted.

Two overpass bridges between Exit 11 and Exit 12 will require complete replacement as their lengths (spans) are not long enough to accommodate the additional lane in each direction on the Turnpike underneath the bridge.  The bridges carry Baboosic Lake Road and Wire Road over the Turnpike.  Both roads are town-maintained. Developing a preferred alternative will be done in close coordination with the Town of Merrimack.

The bridge that carries the FEET over Baboosic Brook (just north of the Wire Road overpass) would require widening on each side. This will likely be another environmentally sensitive area requiring a greater emphasis on erosion control and stormwater management during and after construction.

Portions of the Exit 12 ramps will require reconstruction.  The bridge that carries Bedford Road over the Turnpike at Exit 12 is already wide enough to accommodate an additional lane of widening on each side of the Turnpike.

Completion of the Manchester Airport Access Road (MAAR) alleviated some of the demand for completing Exit 12. Widening the Turnpike through the Exit 12 area would not require the completion of Exit 12, nor would it preclude the ability to complete the interchange at a future date.  The northern limit of the middle segment would match into the 3-lane Turnpike completed as part of the Airport Access Road project in 2011. 

Cost:  The cost of the middle segment, including engineering and right-of-way acquisition is estimated to be $45 million.

 

 

FEET near Exit 11, view north

FEET near Exit 11
(viewing north)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Northern Segment (Bedford)

Description: The northern segment begins approximately 0.6 miles south of the US Route 3 overpass bridge and runs northerly for approximately 1.3 miles, ending within the I-293 interchange.

Click here for a map of the Northern Segment

 

Design Considerations

The southern limit of this segment will match into the Turnpike widening completed as part of the Manchester Airport Access Road (MAAR) Project in 2016.

Cost:  The cost of the northern segment, including engineering and right-of-way acquisition is estimated to be $11 million.

FEET crossing under Route 3
(viewing southeast)

 

FEET near 293 Interchange
(viewing west)

 

Summary & Finding 

Improving the FEET to provide at least three lanes in each direction from the Massachusetts/New Hampshire state line northerly to the I-293 interchange in Bedford would require widening three separate segments of the highway at the estimated costs listed below.

SEGMENT

LOCATION

LENGTH

COST

Southern

Nashua/Merrimack, Exit 8 to Exit 10

1.5 miles

$14 million

Middle

Merrimack, Exit 11 to MAAR Project

5.3 miles

$45 million

Northern

Bedford MAAR Project to I-293

1.3 miles

$11 million

Total Planning-level Cost Estimate:

$70 million