Why I-93 Highway Expansion is wrong for Concord:

I-93 Highway Expansion

According to the data, research and expert opinion, highway expansion does not reduce congestion - it encourages more - this is called “Induced Demand”.  In his two part article on the I-93 expansion in the Concord Monitor, David Brooks brilliantly explains why highway expansion is wrong for Concord - we’ve expanded on this list below.

 

There’s a huge amount of fuel here to warrant a full fledged “push back on highway expansion” movement. Cities across America are pushing back on expansion and even dismantling their existing highway systems to right the wrongs of 1960s highway development.  

Highway expansion:

  1. Encourages more driving - induced demand.

  2. Is an outdated solution -most cities are trying to right 1960s highway development wrongs.

  3. Worsens the existing racial and socioeconomic divide.

  4. Is a bad use of the valuable riverfront real estate.

  5. Results in more driving - pollution, fossil fuels, noise, heat island effect.

  6. Is not based on current traffic modeling -the last traffic modeling was stopped in 2013.  The pandemic changed the landscape of transportation.  Is this reflected in the expansion plan?

  7. Is not a wise investment, but rather a  “huge amount of lack of return from a project that will cost at least a quarter of a billion dollars, about 2 ½ times as much as Concord city government spends annually”. -David Brooks

  8. Will increase accidents. “The one thing it will do, by the way, is create more serious accidents. People drive faster on wider roads, so those fender-benders will become pile-ups.” -David Brooks

  9. “Uses up vast amounts of our public dollars and it warps how we design and build our cities and towns (parking minimums are the bane of pleasant downtowns).” -David Brooks

  10. "Puts heat-trapping gases into the atmosphere. It would be criminal to spend vast amounts of dollars to make it slightly easier for some people to move around at certain times while pumping out more heat-trapping gases.” -David Brooks

  11. Puts our homeless population at increased risk for harm during construction.

  12. Is being proposed without current data from the widening implemented on I-93 from MA to Bow.

  13. Prioritizes long distance out-of-state travel over the people who actually live and work in and around Concord.

  14. Causes people to default to cars in a time when the rest of the world is moving towards autonomous vehicles, micro mobility, and mass transit.

  15. Will have a disproportionate negative impact those with the fewest resources to advocate against it.  

  16. Takes up valuable real estate and precludes other priorities.

  17. Offers no consideration for future passenger or high speed rail - technology that would take cars off the road.

  18. Add your concerns to the list here!

Similar highway expansion proposals have devastated cities across America who were too fragmented or disorganized in their efforts to advocate for their city.  Unifying is our best shot at advocating for a plan to connect our city!  

We need strong community input now from individuals like YOU!  

  • Project history & plans here

  • Watch NHDOT's latest expansion proposal presentation here

  • Review one concept for a deck park here.

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I-93 HIGHWAY EXPANSION