Spaulding Turnpike

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Spaulding Turnpike

Spaulding Turnpike highlighted in red
Route information
Maintained by NHDOT
Length33.2 mi[1] (53.4 km)
Existedc. 1956–present
Major junctions
South end I-95 / Blue Star Turnpike / US 1 Byp. / US 4 / NH 16 in Portsmouth
Major intersections US 4 in Dover
NH 9 in Dover
US 202 / NH 11 in Rochester
North end NH 16 / NH 125 in Milton
CountryUnited States
StateNew Hampshire
CountiesRockingham, Strafford
Highway system

The Spaulding Turnpike is a 33.2-mile (53.4 km) north-south toll road in eastern New Hampshire. Nearly its entire length is overlapped by New Hampshire Route 16. Its southern terminus is at the Portsmouth Traffic Circle (Interstate 95 / U.S. Route 1 Bypass) in Portsmouth, a terminus it shares with U.S. Route 4 and NH 16. Its northern terminus is at an interchange with New Hampshire Route 125 in Milton, where NH 16 continues north as a surface road.

The turnpike roughly parallels the Maine border. NH 16 was signed onto the Turnpike in the mid-1990s.

The turnpike is part of the New Hampshire Turnpike System operated by the New Hampshire Department of Transportation Bureau of Turnpikes. Along with I-95 between the Massachusetts state border and the Portsmouth Circle (Blue Star Turnpike), the two turnpikes are collectively known as the Eastern Turnpike.


The turnpike is named for the Spaulding brothers of RochesterRolland H. Spaulding (1873–1942) and Huntley N. Spaulding (1869–1955)—who both served as Governor of New Hampshire.[2] It was announced in August 1952 to connect Portsmouth and Rochester at a cost of $13.5 million.[3] Work on the first section of the turnpike, between Portsmouth and Dover, started in 1954, with that segment opening in September 1956.[4] The complete (as originally planned) 24-mile (39 km) route between Portsmouth and Rochester opened on August 29, 1957, the same day that the Everett Turnpike was dedicated.[4] In 1977, the New Hampshire House of Representatives approved funding to extend the Spaulding Turnpike by 12 miles (19 km) north through Milton.[5] Construction began in 1978,[6][7] with the extension opening on August 20, 1981.[8]

Route description

The Spaulding Turnpike begins in Portsmouth, at I-95 northbound Exit 4. Access from I-95 south and US 1 Bypass is facilitated via Exit 5 (Portsmouth Traffic Circle). A northbound-only exit connects with Brady Drive, accessible only from the traffic circle. The Spaulding Turnpike becomes a six lane freeway concurrent with US 4 and NH 16, with a 55 mph (90 km/h) speed limit. Exit 1 in Newington provides access to Pease International Tradeport and the Newington malls.

View along the Spaulding Turnpike approaching the Rochester toll

Exit 2, a northbound-only exit/entrance which facilitated access to the Mall at Fox Run and adjacent businesses, was closed permanently on July 19, 2015. Exit 3 is a full-access interchange with Woodbury Avenue, with a connection to Pease Tradeport via Arboretum Drive. Exit 4 provides access to Newington Village and businesses along Shattuck Way. The turnpike then crosses the Little Bay Bridge into Dover, with seven lanes (three northbound, and four southbound) for vehicles and a temporary pedestrian and bicycle path on the northbound shoulder[9] of the bridge.

Exit 5 provides access to Hilton Park and Wentworth Terrace. This exit was permanently closed when the northbound lanes were shifted onto the permanent northbound alignment of the turnpike on November 28, 2018.

US 4 leaves the turnpike at Exit 6, with the Dover barrier toll located about 700 meters (770 yd) to the north. The reconstruction of Exit 6 into a full access diamond interchange between Dover and Durham was open to traffic on November 15, 2019.[10] Before the reconstruction, there was no access from eastbound US 4 to the northbound turnpike or Dover Point Road north, nor from the southbound turnpike to Dover Point Road north. Traffic then had to utilise the Spaulding Turnpike southbound and turn around at Exit 4 in Newington in order to access the Spaulding Turnpike northbound or Dover Point Road north.[11]

North of the toll plaza, the freeway passes west of downtown Dover. Exits 7 through 9 provide local access via NH 108, NH 9 and Indian Brook Drive, respectively. A park and ride facility is located on Indian Brook Drive just off Exit 9. North of Exit 9, the speed limit increases to 65 mph (105 km/h).

A gap in the exit numbering—there is no Exit 10—allows for future addition of an interchange with more direct access to Somersworth; such an exit has been under consideration "since the turnpike was built in the 1950s".[12]

The turnpike continues north and crosses into Rochester, reaching the second barrier toll soon after. Exit 11 provides access to Old Dover Road, for northbound traffic only. The freeway expands to six lanes north of Exit 12 and bypasses downtown Rochester to the west. US 202 joins the freeway at Exit 13, near the site of a park and ride facility built in 2014. NH 11 joins the turnpike 1.6 miles (2.6 km) to the north at Exit 15. Both US 202 and NH 11 depart the turnpike at Exit 16 to East Rochester.

Immediately north of Exit 16, the freeway narrows into a super two and the speed limit drops to 55 mph (90 km/h). The highway continues north into Milton, with Exits 17 and 18 providing local access via NH 75 and NH 125. The Spaulding Turnpike designation ends at Exit 18 near Union; NH 16 continues north as a surface road.


Two barrier tolls are present on the Spaulding Turnpike—one in Dover and one in Rochester. Travel anywhere south of exit 6, north of exit 11, or between the barrier tolls (exits 7 through 9) is free of charge.

Electronic tolling

In November 2021, the New Hampshire Department of Transportation announced the installation of all-electronic tolling and collection of funds using E-ZPass transponders that are scanned by sensors for payment.[13]

Toll rates

Toll rates are determined by the class of vehicle (number of axles, single or dual rear tires). The NHDOT currently offers discounted tolls for customers utilizing E-ZPass transponders registered with the agency. The discount rates are 30 percent for Class 1-4 vehicles (single rear tires) and 10 percent for Class 5-12 vehicles (dual rear tires).

Class Vehicle description Cash fare NH E-ZPass fare
1 2 axles, single rear tires $0.75 $0.53
2 3 axles, single rear tires $1.00 $0.70
3 4 axles, single rear tires $1.25 $0.88
4 5 axles, single rear tires $1.50 $1.05
5 2 axles, dual rear tires $1.50 $1.35
6 3 axles, dual rear tires $2.00 $1.80
7 4 axles, dual rear tires $2.50 $2.25
8 5 axles, dual rear tires $3.00 $2.70
9 6 axles, dual rear tires $3.50 $3.15
10 7 axles, dual rear tires $4.00 $3.60
11 8 axles, dual rear tires $4.50 $4.05
12 9 axles, dual rear tires $5.00 $4.50

Exit list

CountyLocationmikmOld exitNew exitDestinationsNotes
I-95 / US 1 Byp. – Portsmouth, Portland, Hampton, BostonPortsmouth Traffic Circle; southern terminus of Spaulding Turnpike / NH 16; eastern terminus of US 4
0.921.48Brady DriveNorthbound exit and entrance; access from Portsmouth Circle only
Newington1.592.561Gosling Road – Pease International Tradeport
2.383.832Fox Run RoadPermanently closed July 16, 2015. Access via exits 1 or 3.
2.864.603Woodbury AvenueTo Arboretum Drive on Pease International Tradeport
3.455.554Nimble Hill Road/Shattuck Way – Newington Village
StraffordDover4.397.075Hilton ParkPermanently closed on November 28, 2018. Access via exit 6.
US 4 west – Durham, Concord / Dover Point Road
Northern end of US 4 concurrency. Full-access interchange opened on November 15, 2019.
5.018.066NDover Point Road – DoverNorthbound exit only.
Closed on December 15, 2016, for widening of turnpike roadbed and construction of new exit 6 interchange.
New Exit 6 interchange utilises footprint of existing off-ramp.
5.58.9Dover toll plaza
9.1414.7147 NH 108 (Durham Road / Central Avenue) – Dover, Durham
NH 9 (Knox Marsh Road) to NH 155 – Downtown Dover, Madbury
Signed as exits 8E and 8W

To NH 9 / NH 108 (Indian Brook Drive) – Dover, Somersworth
Rochester17.327.8Rochester toll plaza
18.2029.2911Old Dover Road – RochesterNorthbound exit only
18.4529.69712 NH 125 (Gonic Road / Columbus Avenue) – Rochester, Gonic
US 202 west (Washington Street) – Rochester, Concord
Southern end of US 202 concurrency
20.7633.41914Ten Rod Road – RochesterNorthbound exit and southbound entrance
NH 11 west (Farmington Road/North Main Street) – Farmington, Alton
Southern end of NH 11 concurrency

US 202 / NH 11 east to NH 125 – East Rochester, Sanford ME
Northern end of US 202 / NH 11 concurrency
NH 75 (Farmington Road) to NH 125 – Milton, Farmington
33.1153.2918 NH 125 (White Mountain Highway) – Union, Milton Mills
NH 16 north (White Mountain Highway) – Ossipee, Conway
Continuation beyond exit 18
1.000 mi = 1.609 km; 1.000 km = 0.621 mi

Sourcing for old exit numbering:[14][15]

Concurrent routes

See also


  1. ^ NHDOT Bureau of Turnpikes - Spaulding Turnpike
  2. ^ "Toll Highway". The Portsmouth Herald. Portsmouth, New Hampshire. August 30, 1957. p. 3. Retrieved July 11, 2020 – via
  3. ^ "N.H. Toll Road To Rochester Up for Hearing". The Portsmouth Herald. April 15, 1953. p. 1. Retrieved January 25, 2022 – via
  4. ^ a b "Spaulding Turnpike Now Open to Traffic". The Portsmouth Herald. Portsmouth, New Hampshire. August 30, 1957. p. 1. Retrieved July 11, 2020 – via
  5. ^ "Turnpike okay". The Portsmouth Herald. Portsmouth, New Hampshire. June 24, 1977. p. 1. Retrieved July 11, 2020 – via
  6. ^ "Spaulding Turnpike". February 20, 2015. Retrieved July 11, 2020.
  7. ^ Bristol, Muriel (June 5, 2018). "Milton and the Spaulding Turnpike". Milton Observer. Retrieved July 11, 2020.
  8. ^ "New Hampshire Turnpike System Traffic and Revenue Study" (PDF). Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. May 29, 2015. p. 7. Retrieved July 11, 2020 – via
  9. ^ Early, Brian. "Little Bay bridge foot-bike path nearly ready". Retrieved 2019-08-19.
  10. ^ "Spaulding Turnpike Dover-Durham access unveiled". Retrieved 20 November 2019.
  11. ^ Haas, Kimberley (May 23, 2009). "Little Bay Bridge gets third lane just before Memorial Day traffic". New Hampshire Union Leader. Retrieved 12 August 2019.
  12. ^ Fernandes, Megan (September 23, 2021). "'Long overdue' Exit 10: Will Somersworth ever see it added to Spaulding Turnpike?". Foster's Daily Democrat. Dover, New Hampshire. Retrieved September 26, 2021.
  13. ^ Briand, Paul (2021-11-19). "No cash, no booths: Dover, Rochester tolls going all-electronic on Spaulding Turnpike". SeacoastOnline. Retrieved 2021-11-20.
  14. ^ USGS, 1956 Dover quadrangle
  15. ^ USGS, 1958 Berwick quadrangle

Further reading