Sep 26, 2014 8:46 PM

Out with the old, in with the new at NH I-93 rest areas

After almost 40 years of selling spirits, one of the massive state liquor stores at the Hooksett rest areas began coming down this week – carefully. “There are only about 30 feet between the old and new building, so it’s a slow process,” said Dave Smith, New Hampshire Department of Transportation project manager for the demolition. The demolition, which started at 10:30 a.m. Monday on the plaza along the northbound lanes of the highway, is part of $38 million in work being done at the rest areas on both sides of Interstate 93 in Hooksett, the second most traveled road in the state after I-95 on the Seacoast. By Friday, little of the building was left. Astute motorists on their way north may have realized something was missing, just as they marveled at the new functional gas pumps at the plaza, a first for New Hampshire. The new liquor store is part of a major revamp of the rest area. Alex Ray, owner of The Common Man restaurants, has leased the land for 35 years. Plans are for not just liquor stores and visitor centers on both sides of the road, but restaurants, delis, convenience stores and 20 gas pumps.


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