Key October events will help set N.H.’s future course

Now that Labor Day has come and gone, we are all busy back at our day jobs and participating in many community events. Living in Concord and having an office in Manchester allows me to partake of both communities.

In October there are a series of events that are worthy of your attention and should be on your calendar (in fact, take it out and mark these dates now).

From 7:30 a.m. to noon, Tuesday, Oct. 24, Concord 2020 will host a symposium, “The Roads to Concord’s Future.” Location is 2 Delta Drive at Delta Dental. Call 228-0220 or e-mail to register or for more details. Three topics will be discusses: regional issues; “Connecting the Dots: Villages/Affordable Housing/Green Development”; and economic vitality.

Neal Peirce of Citistates, the keynote speaker, will update his findings for the New England Futures Project and address his views on New Hampshire and Concord’s challenges and opportunities over the next decade. He also will tackle the impact of energy costs and availability on our built environments.

On Wednesday morning, Oct. 25, Peirce will address the Greater Manchester Chamber’s sixth annual Infrastructure Summit. Again, he will focus on the opportunities and challenges facing the Manchester region and the state over the next decade. The morning summit, 7:30 to 11:45 a.m. at the Center of New Hampshire, will feature: regional updates; “Benchmarking: I-93, the Airport, rail projects”; panel discussions; and frank and candid Q&As.

For more information, call 666-6600, ext. 112 or visit

Later on Wednesday evening, Peirce will be the keynote speaker at the Greater Concord Chamber’s Annual Dinner, where he will announce that this writer is the Citizen of the Year! (No, just kidding). Neal will share his candid views on the Capital Region and the opportunity for the chamber to guide growth and development in the Merrimack Valley.

Any one of these events is worthwhile. The programs have been well thought out (thanks to yours truly and many others) and promise to be thought-provoking. So as we envision the area’s future and think about hydrogen and other fuels we need to think about today’s policies and approvals that will impact us 10, 20, 30 or 50 years from now.

Your interest and input are critical to help change course so New Hampshire does not end up like Everywhere, USA. Mark your calendars or post your PDA, but be sure to show up and participate in one or more of these events. nhbr

Bill Norton, president of Norton Asset Management, is a Counselor of Real Estate (CRE), a Fellow of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (FRICS) and a member of the board of The Initiative for a 2020 Vision for Concord. He can be reached at

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