Electrify America says it has completed its first string of cross-country fast charging, direct current (DC) electric vehicle charging stations.
The route, spanning 11 states and over 2,700 miles, travels along interstates 15 and 70 from Los Angeles to Washington, DC, providing the first cross-country route with charging stations available the entire way, the company, a subsidiary of Volkswagen of America, said. The charging stations provide speeds up to 350 kilowatts.
“Range anxiety” and the fear of not being able to find an electric vehicle charging station is often cited as a key barrier to the wider adoption of electric vehicles.
"Electrify America's primary goal has always been to advance electric vehicle adoption in the U.S., and that starts by instilling feelings of confidence and freedom in consumers when it comes to EV ownership,” Anthony Lambkin, director of operations at Electrify America, said in a statement.
By end of the summer, Electrify American says it will complete a second cross-country electric vehicle charging route, from Jacksonville, Fla., to San Diego, Calif., on interstate highways starting near I-10 and finishing along I-8. The company says its charging stations are on average about 70 miles apart, in metro areas and near highway routes near stores and restaurants.
Electrify America already has a series of charging stations on the East Coast along Interstate 95 from Portland, Maine, to Miami, Fla., and on the West Coast along Interstate 5 from Seattle, Wash., to San Diego.
A group of utilities, including several public power utilities, recently released a report recommending adding electric vehicle charging stations for freight haulers and delivery trucks along the I-5 corridor running from Canada to Mexico.
To date, Electrify America has more than 435 charging stations in operation with over 1,900 DC fast chargers and has more than 100 charging sites in development. Electrify America says it has located more than 300 of its completed stations near major highways to facilitate regional and cross-country travel.
Early on, Electrify America installed Level 2 chargers, but the majority of its work is focused on DC fast charger, spokesman Mike Moran said.
In 2019, Electrify America says it opened DC fast-charging stations at an accelerated pace of about 1.2 per business day. By the end of 2021, the company plans to install or have under development approximately 800 charging stations with about 3,500 DC fast chargers.
Electrify America, which says it has the largest open DC fast charging network in the US, was formed in 2017 to manage $2 billion in investments in zero emission vehicle infrastructure. The funds come from its parent company and are mandated under a 2016 settlement of the Volkswagen emissions-cheating scandal. The settlement will cost the car manufacturer $14.7 billion over 10 years.
The settlement also includes $2.7 billion over three years for an environmental trust to remediate the illegal levels of nitrogen oxides emitted by the VW vehicles.
Electrify America solicits input for investment plans
Electrify America is soliciting input for its Cycle 3 Investment Plans through July 31, 2020.
The American Public Power Association plans to submit comments encouraging Electrify America to consider investments in public power communities.
Organizations interested in providing comments, information, data and/or recommendations should click on this link for further details and submit input.