an alternative transportation guide?
The Seacoast region offers a surprisingly broad range of options for those who need to or would
like to get around without the use of a personal automobile. The intent of
this guide is to make it easier for Seacoast residents to find out about and use these options.
If you are interested in working to improve these options, and willing to take
part in a Transit Users Group providing input to shape regional transit
options, please email us!
Local & Regional Bus Service
COAST (the Cooperative Alliance for Seacoast Transportation) and Wildcat
Transit both offer public transit service in the Seacoast area. COAST serves
eleven communities in the Seacoast with concentrated service along the
Rochester-Dover-Newington-Portsmouth (Spaulding Turnpike) corridor. Wildcat
Transit service focuses on connections between Durham/UNH and adjacent
communities of Dover, Newmarket, Newington, and Portsmouth.
Also, there are many area Health & Human service providers which offer
demand responsive transit services to their client populations and in some cases
the general public. These agencies have developed transportation services because many of their
clients do not have access to an automobile or are for some other reason unable
Go to local and
regional bus service schedules
Interstate Bus & Rail
Many interstate commuters bound for Boston or Portland choose bus or rail travel over driving because it allows them
to reduce driving stress, accomplish other things on the way to work, and reduce
the costs and hassle of parking and additional vehicle maintenance.
C & J Trailways and the Coach Company both provide interstate bus
commuter services; while Amtrak operates passenger rail service
between Portland and Boston with daily stops in Dover and Exeter, and Friday
through Monday stops in Durham.
Because of the dispersed development patterns in the region, especially away
from the Spaulding Turnpike corridor, most intercity
passengers "park and ride" - that is, they use their personal vehicles
for the short trip to the bus or train station (another option is "kiss and
ride" - a spouse or friend provides the drop off!). The New Hampshire
Department of Transportation is working to facilitate this by constructing new
park and ride facilities and improving ones.
COAST also offers a connection to Boston-bound C & J Trailways bus
service at the Portsmouth Transportation Center at the Pease International
Tradeport; and links to the Amtrak rail stations in Dover and Exeter.
Wildcat Transit offers connections to the Dover and Durham stations.
Go to Intercity Service
Carpooling or Vanpooling is often a good option for commuters who cannot get
where they need to go using any of the regular bus or train services, or for
those who simply prefer such an arrangement. New Hampshire and Massachusetts
both have rideshare programs which include computerized
ridematching services to any interested commuters. In Massachusetts,
I-93 has High-Occupancy Vehicle lanes approaching Boston. Find out if your
employer offers any incentives for ridesharing.
Riding in a vanpool drastically reduces commute costs. Vanpoolers share gas costs, tolls,
parking costs, and other expenses. Based on figures provided by the American Automobile
Association, driving alone to work 50 miles each way can cost over $8,000 a year. The same commute
in a 14-person vanpool can cost as little as $1,300 annually.
the cost of your commute!
for available seats in vanpools going to the Boston area at the MassRIDES website!
MASSRides is the Massachusetts statewide ridesharing program
Information includes: Origin(s) • Destination(s) • Time arriving in Boston/Time leaving
Boston • Driver/Phone
& Ride Facilities
The New Hampshire Department of Transportation maintains Park & Ride
lots in Epping, Hampton, Lee, Portsmouth, and Somersworth which allow ridesharers in the region to meet
at central locations convenient to the Spaulding Turnpike, US Route 4, and
a Map of NH's Park & Ride Facilities
Park & Ride
NH 9 near
Calef's Country Store near NH 125
- Phone, Lights
NH 125 & NH 101
Lights, Shelter, Bicycle lockers
NH 27 at 1-95,
Amenities - Phone,
Lee Park & Ride
US 4 West of Lee Traffic Circle
Amenities - Phone,
Lights, Shelter, Bicycle Lockers
Portsmouth Park & Ride
NH 33 at I-95, Exit 3
Amenities - Phone,
Lights, Bike Rack
Portsmouth Transportation Center
I-95, Exit 3A
Lights, Shelter & Waiting Room Building
bus service available - C&J
Somersworth Park & Ride
NH 9 off Spaulding Turnpike, Exit 9
Many of the region's residents work in the community where they live, or in a
bordering town. For these individuals, biking or walking to work is a real
possibility much of the year. Bicycle commuting can offer the benefits of
improved health, reduced stress, and cost savings to the individual; and the
potential for reduced congestion and air pollution for the region.
The Seacoast MPO is facilitating safe bicycle travel by working
with the region's communities and the state to implement a network of safe
bicycle routes, mainly consisting of four foot shoulder lanes on selected roads.
It is easy to connect to transit with your bike as well. COAST and Wildcat
Transit both offer bike racks on the front of buses that allow you to take your
bike with you on the bus. In addition, the state is now installing bicycle lockers at many of its Park
& Ride facilities, including those in Portsmouth and Epping. Individuals
using park and rides are now able to bike to their bus or carpool.
Employers can also encourage bicycle commuting by providing secure storage
areas for bicycles and by making shower and changing facilities available to
their employees who bike or walk to work. Ask your employer what they would be
willing to do to make bicycle commuting work for you!
Don't be a Road Warrior --
NHDOT's new bike safety brochure
Fitting Your Bike Helmet
-- Properly fitting your helmet is key to safety
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Reducing Air Pollution
During the summer months, many areas in southern New Hampshire, including
the Seacoast area, experience unhealthy levels of ground-level
ozone, commonly called "smog." Cars and trucks are a major source of
the pollutants which form ground-level ozone!
Using alternatives to single occupancy vehicles is one way to reduce
emissions from cars. Other steps you can take to reduce air pollution from
cars and trucks include:
- Combine errands into fewer trips and do your shopping close to home or
- Use radial tires and keep tires properly inflated
- Keep your car tuned-up and well maintained
- If you are in the market to buy a car or truck, keep in mind that a more
fuel efficient vehicle will also be less polluting
- Avoid jack rabbit starts and sudden stops, and don't let your vehicle
- Use gas stations with gasoline vapor recovery nozzles and do not top off