CITIZEN VOICES® Majority oppose commuter rail in New Hampshire - 245 participants

Nov 24, 2014

A November 2014 study by the New Hampshire Rail and Transit Authority (NHRTA) examined the feasibility of extending commuter rail services from Massachusetts to Nashua, Manchester or Concord, and estimated that state contributions would range from $4 to $15 million each year for costs not covered by federal funding, MBTA funds or user fees. On November 24, Citizens Count, NH’s Live Free or Die Alliance decided to put the issue to its Facebook members, posting the question, “Should NH state government fund a commuter rail?”

Should NH state government fund a commuter rail?

Commuter Rail NH Citizen Voices Chart

Participation: 245 participants gave 618 responses.

A total of 62% of those participating gave a ‘yes or no’ response to the question. The remaining 38% of participants engaged in the discussion but did not give a ‘yes or no’ response. In total, 245 individuals from New Hampshire contributed a total of 618 responses or reactions to this question. (Click here for details on our methodology.)

What Participants Said

No: A strong majority, at 62% of ‘yes or no’ respondents, were opposed to funding a commuter rail.

  • “If it's viable, a private company would take the risk and reap the profits.”
  • “If the economy was better and our government didn't over spend I would see this as a good thing. But not with how things are going today.”

Yes: The minority of ‘yes or no’ respondents, at 38%, were in favor of funding a commuter rail.   

  • “We need to improve our infrastructure, create alternatives to automobiles and take some of the pressure off our road systems.”
  • Long-term benefits to the environment and relieving pressure on congested roads were two oft-cited reasons for supporting the proposal.

Other: As noted above, 38% of those participating did not give a ‘yes or no’ response, instead addressing their comments to related questions and issues. These included:  

  • Whether New Hampshire would be better served by rail expansion to other destinations, such as Portsmouth or the North Country, or a line connecting the eastern and western parts of the state.

*Editor selection of actual participant quotes. 

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