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Seacoast Metropolitan Planning Organization

Regional Alternative Transportation Guide


 
CONTENTS
COAST & Wildcat Bus
Paratransit Service
Interstate Bus Service

Portland-Boston Rail

Ridesharing
Park & Ride Locations
Bike Commuting

 

 

Tax incentives 

for alternative commutes!

 

 

Calculate the cost of your commute!

 

 

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Why 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 to drive.

    Go to local and regional bus service schedules


     Using 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 Schedules


     Ridesharing

    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. 

    Calculate the cost of your commute!

    Seacoast Commuter Options 603-766-9198

    New Hampshire RideShare (NH Statewide)

    603-271-4043

    MassRIDES (Massachusetts)

    1-888-4-COMMUTE

    Check 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


     Park & 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 I-95.

See a Map of NH's Park & Ride Facilities


     Bike Commuting
    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 work
  • 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 idle unnecessarily.
  • Use gas stations with gasoline vapor recovery nozzles and do not top off the tank

 

 

S E C O A S T    M E T R O P O L I T A N   P L A N N I N G   O R G A N I Z A T I O N

Rockingham Planning Commission

156 Water Street Exeter, NH 03833 (603) 778-0885

Strafford Regional Planning Commission

2 Ridge St., Suite 4  Dover, NH 03833 (603) 742-2523

Contact RPC

Contact SRPC