Upcoming Events
June 27 The Natural Resources Advisory Committee will meet at 3:30 p.m. at SWRPC's offices at 37 Ashuelot Street in Keene, NH. For more information contact Lisa Murphy of SWRPC staff.
July 19 The Monadnock Alliance for Sustainable Transportation Steering Committee will meet from 4:30 p.m. at SWRPC's offices at 37 Ashuelot Street in Keene, NH. For more information contact Henry Underwood of SWRPC staff.

 

Other Items of Interest
Letters of intent for Congestion Mitigation and  Air Quality grant funding due July 7th. Learn more by clicking here.
The Regional Public Involvement Plan for Southwest New Hampshire has been adopted and released. To view the plan, please click here.

The NH Broadband Mapping and Planning Program needs your help! Take the Broadband Access Survey and Speed Test to help identify homes and businesses that are un-served and underserved for high speed internet. Info

For additional NH planning events, see the NH Office of Energy and Planning Events Calendar.
Discover more about Granite State Future.
To learn about Monadnock Region Future: A Plan for Southwest New Hampshire visit.
To learn about the Greater Keene Air Quality Education and Outreach Campaign visit
To learn about the Vermont Yankee Nuclear Power Plant decommissioning process visit

 

Highlights - June 2013

 SWRPC  June 2013

 Commission Highlights

 Vol. 19 - No. 6

 

Check out the SWRPC Highlights Archive for previous issues.

Current Issue in PDF format.


Taking Nominations for Freight Transportation Working Group

The Southwest Region’s 102,313 residents, 46,040 households and 2,648 places of employment are part of a large economy that requires the efficient movement of freight. Long-term economic growth will result in even greater reliance on freight transportation which will place new demands on our transportation infrastructure including the Region’s highways and bridges. The Southwest Region has unique freight infrastructure challenges in that it does not have an interstate highway and limited active rail and air service. On the other hand, it has opportunities for additional freight capacity with its miles of controlled access highway, state-owned rail right of way, and two modest airports. In an effort to improve freight planning for the Region, SWRPC is looking to form a Freight Working Group to gather information about regional freight and commodity flow. SWRPC plans to recruit freight industry representatives to help identify existing strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats to those industries based on the existing freight system. Input and data from the Working Group will be used to inform regional freight strategies and New Hampshire’s first State Freight Plan. If you have a business in your community that hauls freight or relies on freight we want to hear from you. Please contact J.B. Mack of Commission staff to nominate businesses or individuals in your community that might be willing to be part of the Freight Transportation Working Group.


Southwest Region Communities Experience Storm Damage

TSeveral communities in the Southwest Region have again experienced serious damage to roads caused by recent heavy rains. These events are very costly to the communities and pose serious safety threats and inconveniences to drivers. Now is a good time to review your Local Hazard Mitigation Plan to see what measures are identified within the Action Plan to help reduce the risk of emergencies due to flooding, erosion, and stormwater runoff. It is also recommended to check for adequate flow through culverts and bridges and clean debris to prevent jamming. After heavy weather events, it is important to inventory these structures to inspect the condition and document necessary changes in the Hazard Mitigation Plan to adequately maintain infrastructure and best position the town to qualify for funding assistance. When faced with a culvert or bridge repair or replacement, determine the appropriate size to ensure that potentially dangerous conditions are avoided in the future. For additional information, please contact Lisa Murphy of Commission staff.


Broadband Verification Project

PThe Planning Commission has begun an effort known as the Municipal Broadband Service Map Verification Project, which is part of the NH Broadband Mapping and Planning Program, to help verify and update the location of DSL and cable in the Monadnock Region. In order to utilize local knowledge, staff recently distributed town-wide maps to municipal officials along with documents explaining the purpose of the project as well as instructions on how to edit the maps. Guidance and assistance will be provided to officials throughout the summer. Edited maps are due back to SWRPC by the end of August 2013. Please contact Henry Underwood or Steve Waleryszak of Commission staff with any questions or comments related to this project.


Upcoming Invasive Plant Species Workshop

The New Hampshire Rivers Council is offering a River Runners Invasive Aquatic Plants Identification and Monitoring workshop in Keene on Thursday, August 1, 2013 from 7:00 - 9:00 p.m. The event is hosted by the Harris Center for Conservation Education and Keene State College, and will be held in Room 101 of the Putnam Science Center at Keene State College. The workshop will include training on the identification of specific invasive aquatic plant species that present a risk of in the Monadnock Region and how to monitor for them. For additional information, please view: http://xml2.des.state.nh.us/blogs/watershed/?p=1741.


Brownfields Activity in Jaffrey

The SWRPC Brownfields Assessment Program is completing a Phase II Environmental Site Assessment (ESA) for the Jaffrey-based Park Theatre. The ESA includes a geophysical survey to determine if a suspected underground storage tank (UST) is present on the site, inspect an area of underground soil and water near a neighboring gas station, and conduct a limited hazardous materials assessment on the structure’s roof materials. As a result of the ESA, a 2,000 gallon UST was discovered on the site and subsequently removed using Brownfields Assessment Program funds. This comes at a time when project development for the Park Theatre is turning a corner. Recently, the Theatre’s site plan for demolition and construction was approved by the Jaffrey Planning Board, and it is close to reaching its campaign goal to raise an additional $100,000 in private donations by July 30th so it may leverage tax credits from the New Hampshire Community Development Finance Authority. Although the building will be demolished, several of its original art deco features will be preserved and incorporated into the new building design. This project is a great example of how the Brownfields Assessment Program can be used as a leveraging source to realize community and economic development goals. If you have a nomination for a brownfields project, please contact J. B. Mack of Commission staff for more information.


Hazard Mitigation Plan Updates

SWRPC staff recently completed Hazard Mitigation Plan updates for New Ipswich and Francestown as part of a grant provided by the NH Department of Environmental Services and NH Homeland Security and Emergency Management. Grant funds are being used to study fluvial erosion hazard areas along portions of the Piscataquog and Souhegan Rivers. Other towns within the study area include Greenfield, Greenville, and Temple. For more information about Hazard Mitigation Plan updates or Fluvial Erosion Hazards, please contact Lisa Murphy of Commission staff.