The Maryland Energy Administration announced the recipients of their Solar Canopy with Electric Vehicle Charger Program grants for Fiscal Year 2018.
The MEA parking lot PV/EV program took applications from businesses, non-profits, state agencies and local governments for funding of up to $200,000 per project. To be eligible for the grant, plans must include at least 75 kW of solar PV panels mounted to a canopy structure over a parking lot and at least four Level 2 charging stations or DC Fast Chargers. The solar canopies must also be located on parking lots that are in use at least five days per week.
Solar Canopy with 20 Electric Vehicle Charging Stations
Nine grants are being awarded in the MEA parking lot PV/EV Program. One of the recipients, McCormick and Company will install a 744-kilowatt solar canopy at their new headquarters in Baltimore. The McCormick project plans to include 20 EV charging stations, which is the greatest number of EV charging stations for an individual MEA grant supported solar canopy in the history of the program.
Mary Beth Tung, Director of the Maryland Energy Administration said, “This program was carefully crafted to combine clean energy generation, and expand EV charging options for drivers.” The 2018 grantees have the potential to supply 6,000 kilowatts of renewable solar power, and add 60 new EV charging stations to Maryland’s charging infrastructure.
The MEA solar canopy grant program began in 2014 and has helped to fund 25 projects to date. Funding for the grants will come from the Strategic Energy Investment Fund, which was created from public auctions of carbon credits through the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative.
The Grant Agreement Execution Deadline is January 5, 2018. All projects must be completed and operating by November 16, 2018. One of the awardees was Charles County which had submitted plans for Solar City/Tesla Energy to build a 1,741 kW solar canopy and four EV charging stations at the Charles County Administration Building in La Plata, MD. Read More …
Last night I got a text from my friend, Rick Rohn, saying that he had found a Tesla Supercharger in Martinsburg, West Virginia. Wait a minute, the Tesla Find Us page has nothing "coming soon" marked anywhere near there.
Rick is an awesome EV advocate and has helped expand the charging infrastructure in the eastern panhandle of the Mountaineer State. Rick and his wife Stacie are also long distance EV adventurers who travel in their Kia Soul EV and before that, a Nissan LEAF. Rick can practically smell a new EV charging station being installed. This one snuck by him until it was brought to his attention by a friend on Facebook. What's even more amazing is that this Supercharger was being built across the street from his shop. Rick had a great sense of humor about this one escaping his detection, saying, "I wouldn't believe it if I hadn't seen it with my own eyes, ha! ha!"
The under construction Martinsburg Supercharger is at Sheetz #220, 1465 Edwin Miller Blvd, Martinsburg, WV 25401.
Plans to install electric vehicle charging stations at every travel plaza along the Pennsylvania Turnpike have been cancelled according to the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP).
In December, 2011, the DEP awarded a $1 million Alternative Fuel Incentive Grant to Car Charging Group, Inc. of Miami Beach, FL to help promote the market for electric vehicles. The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission was to supply $500,000 of infrastructure support funds to help with the cost of transformers, electric lines, and meters. Car Charging Group pledged to match the $1 million grant to install electric vehicle charging equipment and services on the Turnpike.
Since 2014, Car Charging Group, which operates the Blink Network, has installed one CHAdeMO Fast Charger and one Level 2 charging station at five of the 17 service plazas along the Turnpike.
Earlier this year, Car Charging Group submitted a plan to complete the installation of charging stations at the remaining 12 service plazas starting April 3, 2017. The company stated their intention to complete the work by June 30, 2017 in accordance with the conditions of their contract. However, it became apparent that they were not going to be able to fulfill their obligations so Pennsylvania terminated the project with them. The unused grant funds have been liquidated into the Alternative Fuels Incentive Fund. Pennsylvania officials are now considering their options for supporting EV infrastructure along the Turnpike. There are no immediate plans in the works.
Today at Tesla’s annual shareholder’s meeting, CEO Elon Musk was asked via Twitter if there were any plans to make it easier for people living in apartments to own and charge a Tesla. Musk responded by saying that the company will be establishing more Supercharging locations within cities for Teslas to charge even if owners do not have access to a traditional home charging station.
Musk explained that these city Supercharging locations will be lower-powered than a regular Supercharger which is optimized for long-distance trips but would have more power than a typical charging connector found in a single family home garage. He said the system will be designed to load-balance the power so that all the cars will not be drawing maximum current at the same time.
Musk said that Tesla needs to solve the problem of charging for people who live in apartments and not just standard homes. “Wherever the car is being parked, at an apartment or work or somewhere in between, we’re going to make sure that there is a place to charge your car even if you live in an apartment.”
Congratulations to the Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) for having 462 miles of Maryland highways designated as National Electric Vehicle Charging Corridors by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration. MDOT had nominated four highways to be considered for inclusion in the newly designated electric vehicle routes. All four of Maryland’s proposed routes were selected.
R. Earl Lewis, Jr., Deputy Secretary for Policy, Planning, & Enterprise Services of MDOT said, “The Maryland Department of Transportation is very excited about the news that the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration has designated 462 miles of Maryland highways as Alternative Fuel / Electric Vehicle Corridors. This designation is another great step forward to give drivers the confidence to count on their electric and alternative fuel vehicles for short and long trips. Having electric vehicle corridors in every corner of our state from I-70 in Western Maryland to US 50 all the way to Ocean City will provide great value to Maryland citizens and businesses as the public and private sector work together to expand this infrastructure. Working with our federal, state and regional partners, we can make Maryland’s electric vehicle deployment and greenhouse gas reduction goals a reality.”
Maryland Alternative Fuel Corridors
I-95: From DE state line to VA state line – 110 miles
I-270: Entire length of corridor – 35 miles
I-70/I-68: From Baltimore to WV border – 174 miles
US-50: From Washington, DC border to Ocean City – 143 miles
UPDATE: Laurel Supercharger is open as of September 23, 2016.
According to the Property Manager at Towne Centre at Laurel, Tesla plans to open the Laurel Supercharger sometime this week. Lawrence Lashley, who works for Greenberg Gibbons Commercial, the development group that owns and operates the Towne Centre at Laurel, told Plug In Sites in a phone interview that he spoke with Tesla yesterday and that Tesla hopes to open the Supercharger Station by this Saturday, September 17. Read More …
Tesla, in coordination with The Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT), the Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA), and Areas USA, will be installing a Supercharger station at the Maryland House Travel Plaza on I-95 near Aberdeen. This location will be about 34 travel miles south of the Newark, DE Supercharger and 50 miles north of the Laurel, MD Supercharger.
Eight Charging Stalls Expected by Mid-October
“Tesla will be coming to the Maryland House with 8 charging stations,” said Carlos de Jesus, Director of Operations for Areas USA, operator of the Travel Plaza. “We expect them up and running by mid-October.” Tesla Superchargers are free for Tesla electric vehicle owners to use. The Superchargers can furnish up to 170 miles of range in as little as 30 minutes. Tesla will be paying the electric utility bill for the energy consumed by the Superchargers.
Superchargers are also being considered for the Chesapeake House Travel Plaza, 15 miles north of Maryland House. Those plans, including the proposed number of stalls, will be based on data gathered from the first year of usage at the Maryland House.
Universal DC Fast Chargers Also Planned
Two separate areas have been allocated for EV charging at each of the two Travel Plazas. One is for the Tesla Superchargers and the second area will be for charging stations that can be used by other electric vehicles, presumably with CHAdeMO and SAE Combo connectors. The operator intends to partner with a charging company other than Tesla to install those stations in the near future.
Maryland House is one of the busiest travel plazas in the country, serving nearly 3 million visitors a year. The operator plans to advertise the EV charging stations to visitors on video monitors inside the building.
The Massachusetts Department of Transportation plans to install electric vehicle fast charging stations at six service plazas along the Massachusetts Turnpike by the end of the year.
The 50kW DC Fast Chargers will support both CHAdeMO and SAE Combo connectors and are being installed by contractor, Voltrek, LLC of Andover, MA. The initial locations are planned for Framingham westbound, Natick eastbound, Charlton eastbound and westbound, Blandford westbound and Lee eastbound.
The first two chargers are expected to be operational by early fall and the other stations are expected to be finished by the end of 2016. MassDOT also plans to install six more DC Fast Chargers along I-90 in the future.
Donald Pettey, MassDOT highway project manager for strategic initiatives, said that a goal of the EV charging stations is to help increase adoption of electric vehicles in the state. Currently, there are nearly 7,000 plug-in electric vehicles registered in Massachusetts. EV adoption is also promoted through the Massachusetts Offers Rebates for Electric Vehicles (MOR-EV) program which has dedicated $3.7 million to increase the number of plug-in vehicles on the road.
Mr. Pettey says that each charging site will be built to accommodate future expansion. At least 200 kW of electrical service is planned at the locations which can support multiple 50 kW chargers or any high-output charging stations that may be available in the future.
The cost to use the charging stations has not been determined but they will be free for the first six months.
We love driving the Tesla out to the mountains of West Virginia. The winding mountain roads are loads of fun to drive in an electric car. It is a paradise for one-foot driving pleasure. Press the accelerator for instant torque to go up the mountain. Let off the pedal to slow down entering the next curve or to let the EV regenerative braking control a long descent.
The only down side to taking an EV when visiting the home of the Mountaineers is the lack of charging stations in much of the state. Tesla is planning to install three or four Superchargers according to the map of future locations on the Tesla website. But to attract and accommodate visitors with any kind of electric vehicle, West Virginia State Parks is planning to install EV charging stations for overnight guests.
“There are not a lot of other states that have this many interstate systems running through it,” said Paul Redford, district administrator for the West Virginia Division of Natural Resources, Parks and Recreation. “We are sitting in an area perfect for more electric car stations.”
West Virginia State Parks plans to install one Schneider Level 2 (240V, 30A) charging station at each of the State Park’s lodges. The funding came from a WV Division of Energy grant and it will be free to use the stations. The parks with lodges include Blackwater Falls, Cacapon, Chief Logan, Hawks Nest, North Bend, Pipestem, Stonewall Jackson, Twin Falls and Tygart Lake. The units should be operational by the end of September, 2016.
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