More EV Charging Stations Coming to Pennsylvania
Written by Anthony Hennen, The Center Square
Published Aug. 15, 2023
Gov. Josh Shapiro said Aug. 14 that Pennsylvania will spend $34 million on dozens of projects in the commonwealth to build out charging stations for electric vehicles.
The money is part of a five-year, $172 million federal grant and the latest installment will support 54 projects in 35 counties.
State officials argued Pennsylvania is ahead of the curve.
"Because of Gov. Shapiro's leadership and record of delivering for Pennsylvanians, we are among the first states distributing these funds that will provide travelers with options and confidence while also (benefiting) our environment,” PennDOT Secretary Mike Carroll said. “These new investments will create good paying jobs and allow Pennsylvanian residents, businesses and visitors to travel across the Commonwealth faster, cleaner and more reliably."
The earliest projects, PennDOT officials said, could start by the end of the year. Before the projects can break ground, they must complete a public process required by the National Environmental Policy Act.
The largest grants went to Applegreen Electric in Washington County for a charging hub ($1.2 million), a TravelCenters of America charging station in Erie County ($1.1 million), a TravelCenters of America charging station in Venango County ($1.1 million), and $1 million to Alnajukchahat Store in Luzerne County for a charging station.
Many of the announced projects were for companies like Sheetz, Wawa and Tesla.
The projects will create 216 charging ports near Pennsylvania’s interstates. As part of the National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) program, the goal is to create “alternative fuel corridors,” concentrating EV charging stations along highly traveled roads. NEVI funding can only be used first to place stations within 50 miles of one another and less than 1 mile from an AFC exit.
Pennsylvania has 173 active direct current fast charging stations, totaling 822 charging ports and another 1,249 active public Level 2 charging stations with 2,643 charging ports.
In PennDOT’s NEVI plan update, the agency estimated a new construction site for charging stations would require $600,000-$1 million in NEVI funds and $200,000-$500,000 to upgrade charging stations to NEVI standards.
In March, PennDOT announced $62 million would come to the state for 2022 and 2023, with local governments, nonprofits and businesses all eligible to receive grants. Grant recipients must provide a minimum 20% match for the funds they receive to build out the charging stations. For fiscal year 2024, the commonwealth will get almost $37 million from the NEVI program.
The NEVI program was highly competitive in Pennsylvania. PennDOT received 271 applications totaling $165 million for the $34 million in federal money available.
Almost 43,000 battery electric vehicles are now registered in Pennsylvania as of 2022, an 82% increase from 2021, and 0.40% of all vehicles registered in the commonwealth.