Town Staff Now has Road Work Costs

October 21, 2016



by Len Lathrop

Both the Hudson Selectmen and Planning Board this fall have had discussions about traffic on the streets of the town.  A third party to these conversations also has been the Nashua Regional Planning Commission.

According to the NRPC website, which was established in 1959 and is the oldest of New Hampshire’s nine regional planning commissions, the group was formed by the City of Nashua and the Town of Hudson to address highway congestion and coordinate land use development.  That same spirit of regional cooperation and problem-solving characterizes the commission’s activities today.

Now serving 13 municipalities, including Nashua and Hudson as well as Amherst, Brookline, Hollis, Litchfield, Lyndeborough, Mason, Merrimack, Milford, Mont Vernon, Pelham, and Wilton, the commission focuses on developing and implementing innovative planning strategies that preserve and improve the quality of life in southern New Hampshire.

In Hudson the officials and staff and most everyone else agree that the six biggest projects are, as outlined in the planning board’s Oct. 3 “Notice of Decision:”

1) Complete a corridor study of Lowell Rd. (Rte. 3A), from the Sagamore Bridge Rd. intersection to Central St. Note:  the board determined that the completion of this study is essential, relative to improving the safety and convenience of travel along this corridor, which is the only north/south travel corridor in Hudson, and is overburdened with traffic during the a.m. and p.m. peak commuter hours.

2) Intersection of Kimball Hill Rd./Route 111/Greeley St. – modify the existing traffic signal at this intersection to include:

(i)an exclusive left-turn arrow for Kimball Hill Rd. westbound onto Rte. 111, and for said left-turn arrow to coincide with an added exclusive left-turn arrow for Greeley St. eastbound onto Rte. 111.  Also, exclusive travel lanes be added at this intersection for Kimball Hill Rd. westbound and north (through) traffic.

3) Intersection of Birch St. and Lowell Rd. – relocate the utility pole on the southwest corner of this intersection, i.e., to a location that provides safe and efficient southbound Birch St. movements onto Lowell Rd.

4) Entrance ramp onto Sagamore Bridge Highway – modify this ramp and provide two lane ramp access to Sagamore Bridge Rd. from Lowell Rd. and Wason Rd.

5) Intersection of Pelham Rd. /Lowell Rd. – add a traffic signal.  Note: this signal would be coordinated with the existing signal at Nottingham Square, and would essentially be a fourth phase to the Nottingham traffic signal, treating both intersections as one.  Further, the proposed Pelham Rd. signal would only be green for Pelham Rd. and red for Lowell Rd., when northbound Lowell Rd. is red at Nottingham Square and the southbound left-turn arrow into Nottingham Square from Lowell Rd. is also red.

6) Amend the Ferry St./Central St. /Library St. /Highland St. Traffic Signal Improvement Project by installing cameras at the following legs of this multiple road junction:

(i)     Central St. NB, at the Ferry St.

(ii)   Library St. NB at Ferry St., and

(iii)  Highland St. WB at the Derry St. signal.

As with everything there is a cost, Town Planner John Cashell was kind enough to provide some estimates of the cost to complete the work:

Number 1 – $100,000

Number 2 – $400,000

Number 3 – $30,000

Number 4 – $1,000,000

Number 5 – $300,000

Number 6 – $150,000

Total cost for all six projects is $1,980,000.

Selectmen McGath, during a recent selectman meeting, stated that there were impact funds for roadway improvements, that the planning board had collected from developed for these improvements.  During that same meeting Selectman Coutu was very upset that anyone would think about spending more taxpayers’ money on the roadway around Library Park.  He stated that they were worse than before all the changes over the past year.  He continued that the town should be trying to have the engineers who did the plans to reimburse the town for the problem or pay to correct the issues.

Let’s see what the next steps are.