F.E. Everett Turnpike runs 44 miles north from the U.S. 3 (Northwest Expressway) freeway in Massachusetts to the exchange between Interstate 89 and 93 at Bow Junction on the outskirts of Concord. The turnpike is tolled from Exit 8 in Nashua northward to Bedford, with a mainline plaza at Exit 13 and ramp tolls at Exits 10 and 11. The portion along Interstate 93 from Manchester to Bow is also tolled with a main line plaza at Hooksett.
The Central New Hampshire Turnpike was approved by State Legislature in 1953, with two years of construction culminating with the August 20, 1955 dedication where the road was named to honor the first New Hampshire highway commissioner, Frederick E. Everett.1,3 The nine mile, four-lane bypass ran north from Robinson Road in Nashua to the Queen City Bridge (U.S. 3 & NH 3A) in Manchester. The initial portion cost $23 million and had no exits in Nashua except for a turnoff to the Henri Burque Highway (named after the Nashua native and state Supreme Court judge3), which was built around the same time to link with U.S. 3 (Concord Street).1,3 The Thornton's Ferry Toll Plaza collected 25 cent tolls per car within a cloverleaf interchange at Greeley Street in Merrimack.2
Work continued on the F.E. Everett Turnpike with the August 29, 1957 opening of the Manchester to Concord section. This stretch opened simultaneously with the Spaulding Turnpike from Dover to Rochester. Tolls were collected at the Hooksett Main Toll Plaza starting on the following day.2
Exits were added at West Hollis Street (NH 111) and Broad Street (NH 130) to the Everett Turnpike through Nashua in 1960. Another Nashua interchange opened four years later at East Dunstable Road. Opening of these ramps preceded the southern extension of the turnpike to the Massachusetts state line in 1966.2
Expansion of the Everett Turnpike took place from Hooksett to Bow on the I-93 portion in 1978. The Hooksett Rest Areas were added during that project as well.2 In 1981, Exit 1 opened to traffic with Spit Brook Road. Two years later the Bedford Road half diamond interchange was completed.2
Major work to expand the Everett Turnpike through Nashua was authorized in 1986. Work kicked off with the opening of the trumpet interchange (Exit 7) with Somerset Parkway in June 1987. January 1989 saw the replacement of the Merrimack toll plaza with a new facility at New Bedford. The new Industrial Drive interchange (Exit 10) followed with an opening in October 1990.2
Further work involved adding collector distributor roadways between Exit 1 and the new Exit 2 with the Circumferential Highway linking south Nashua with Hudson. Construction was preceded by the demolition of the northbound side rest area beyond Spit Brook Road in October 1992 (it was replaced by a new welcome center off Exit 6 in fall 2000). The new Exit 2 opened on November 23, 1999, thus completing widening of the turnpike through Nashua.2
F.E. Everett Turnpike Guides
- "By The Numbers." The Telegraph (Nashua, NH), August 21, 2005.
- "N.H. TURNPIKE TIMELINE." The Telegraph (Nashua, NH), August 21, 2005.
- "50 years ago, region joined the superhighway era." The Telegraph (Nashua, NH), August 21, 2005.
Page Updated 02-13-2015.