NH Sen. Martha Fuller Clark calls on Feds to support the Sarah Mildred Lawrence Bridge and Portsmouth's Main Wharf projects

The Portsmouth Democrat asks the Obama Administration to help defray projects' costs

(Portsmouth, New Hampshire) Senator Martha Fuller Clark today released copies of letters she has sent in support of two transportation projects vital to the economic health of New Hampshire's Seacoast. The letters, both addressed to Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, ask for Transportation Infrastructure Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER ) Discretionary Grant money to be applied to expanding and upgrading the main wharf at Portsmouth's port facility  at and for a new rail line needed to connect Portsmouth with the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard.

"These projects are essential to maintain and strengthen the economy on both sides of the Piscataqua River. Sen. Clark said. "Clearly the federal government should support these grants because of the significant role that the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, which employs 5000 people, plays in servicing our nuclear submarines and in the economy of the Seacoast."

"Senator Clark has worked with us from the beginning," said Pease Director of Ports and Harbors Geno Marconi. "She chaired a Ad-Hoc Study Committee for the PDA which stated as one of the conclusions that the Wharf should be expanded."

The main wharf at the port facility is a key component of New Hampshire's only general cargo, public access, deep water marine terminal. The TIGER grant, applied for by the Pease Development Authority Division of Ports and Harbors, would inject $11,223,788 into the project. The resulting improvements will enhance services to large ocean-going freight carriers.

The Sarah Mildred Long Bridge is 73 years old and has played a central role in the Seacoast's economic life since the beginning of the Second World War. The grant, jointly requested by Maine and New Hampshire would provide $25 million for the construction of a new railway line as part of the bridge replacement project that is crucial to Naval Yard's continued viability.

According to Undersecretary of Transportation for Policy Polly Trottenberg, the deadline for these TIGER discretionary grant applications was June 3rd with final determinations to be made early in the Fall.