Many of the central ideas embodied in the RAISE Manchester project harken back to the city’s 2006 Downtown Strategic Development plan and were also articulated more recently in the 2021 Manchester Master Plan.
In 2017, local civic and business leaders, community groups, residents and nonprofits launched an initiative called Manchester Connects – Multimodal Transportation and Land Use Planning Initiative, which was funded through a public/private partnership supported by the Southern New Hampshire Planning Commission. It studied and recommended a number of ways the city could increase connectivity, whether people are moving on foot, or by bike, car, bus or train.
On January 2020, The Manchester Transit-Oriented Development (TOD) Plan Team hosted a separate but related public charrette, which included presentations from city planning staff and breakout groups for gathering feedback on the conceptual plan. Over 120 people also answered an online survey in the two weeks following the charrette.
The resulting proposal is the result of hundreds of residents and other stakeholders and enjoys broad support.
The U.S. Department of Transportation awarded the $25 million RAISE grant in November 2021. The funds awarded were the highest possible under the grant program.