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Replacement of deteriorating infrastructure is critical to Seacoast region, Portsmouth Naval Shipyard

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) welcomed an announcement this evening that the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) will award $25 million in grant funding for the replacement of the Sarah Mildred Long Bridge.  The 70-year-old bridge, which connects Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and Kittery, Maine, is rated structurally deficient, and requires immediate replacement to ensure public safety and continuation of interstate commerce.

“This is terrific news for New Hampshire and especially the Seacoast region, which relies on the Sarah Long Bridge for interstate travel and commerce," Shaheen and Ayotte said. "The replacement of this aging infrastructure will help support transit and economic activity in New Hampshire and Maine, as well as national security needs at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, which relies on the bridge’s rail component.  Replacing the bridge has been a bipartisan and regional effort, and we are pleased that New Hampshire and Maine's DOTs worked together to successfully compete for this federal grant."

Shaheen and Ayotte strongly supported the New Hampshire Department of Transportation’s and Maine Department of Transportation’s joint application for funding under the Transportation Investment Generation Economic Recovery (TIGER) VI program.  In 2013, they joined members of Maine’s congressional delegation in inviting Secretary of Transportation Anthony Foxx to visit the bridge, and they have consistently advocated for the bridge’s replacement in letters, hearings, and in meetings with U.S. Department of Transportation officials.  

Previously, Shaheen and Ayotte partnered with members New Hampshire’s and Maine’s congressional delegations to obtain funding for the replacement of the Memorial Bridge in Portsmouth.