For Immediate Release
August 14, 2014
CONCORD – Following today's announcement that an agreement has been reached for the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) $1.4 million Transportation Investment Generating Economy Recovery (TIGER) 2013 grant to the New Hampshire Northcoast Railroad's main-line rail between Rochester and Ossipee, Governor Maggie Hassan issued the following statement:
"Northcoast Railroad is an important economic link for southeastern and central New Hampshire, connecting the region to the national freight rail network with a connection to Boston at its southern portion. Industrial sector companies depend on this railroad, and the repairs and upgrades made possible by this TIGER grant will directly impact existing customers and greatly assist our efforts to bring new industry to the region. Strengthening our transportation infrastructure is critical to our long-term economic growth, and I thank the New Hampshire Congressional delegation for their advocacy, as well as the U.S. Department of Transportation for this critical investment that will help keep our economy moving in the right direction."
On May 30, 2013, Governor Hassan sent a letter to USDOT in support of the New Hampshire Department of Transportation (NHDOT) TIGER grant application for the Northcoast Railroad.
The full text of the Governor's letter is below:
Secretary Raymond H. LaHood
United States Department of Transportation
1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
Washington, DC 20590
Re: Rochester-Ossipee Rail Line Upgrades and Repairs
Dear Secretary LaHood:
I write in support of the Transportation Investment Generating Economy Recovery (TIGER) V grant application submitted by the New Hampshire Department of Transportation (NHDOT) for the upgrade and repair of 42 miles of main-line rail between Rochester and Ossipee, New Hampshire, in Strafford and Carroll counties.
Owned and operated by the New Hampshire Northcoast Railroad, this short-line freight railroad provides service through the southeastern and central regions of New Hampshire. Serving as an important link for an economically distressed area of our state, this line connects the region to the national freight rail network with a connection to Boston at its southern portion. Industrial sector companies depend on services from this railroad, but are negatively impacted by low weight limits that cause additional shipments and deter suppliers from using the line.
Funds from this grant will help support repairs and upgrades to this 42-mile section that will allow North America's standard 286,000-lb. rail-car shipments to travel the full length of the corridor, increase the speeds that trains can travel, and improve safety and reliability. The higher weight limit will directly impact existing customers and greatly assist our efforts to bring new industry to the region, and a TIGER V grant will help complete a multi-year, public-private effort between a private railroad company, the State of New Hampshire, the regional planning commission and local communities.
Thank you for your consideration of NHDOT's TIGER V grant application for the New Hampshire Northcoast Railroad project.
With every good wish,
Margaret Wood Hassan