New York State Announces EV Charging Stations At New York State Thruway Park & Ride Commuter Lots

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Thruway Authority and New York Power Authority to Install Level 2 Electric Vehicle Chargers at 9 Thruway-Owned Commuter Lots Spanning from Ulster to Erie Counties

New Charging Stations to Help Decarbonize Transportation Sector, Reduce Statewide Carbon Emissions, and Encourage More Drivers to Utilize Electric Vehicles and Public Transportation

New York State today announced plans to install electric vehicle charging hubs at up to nine commuter Park and Ride lots along the New York State Thruway system throughout upstate New York. The Level 2 charging stations, provided by the New York State Thruway Authority and New York Power Authority (NYPA) through the State’s EVolve NY and Charge NY programs, will promote cleaner mobility and help reduce greenhouse gas pollution generated by the transportation sector to improve the public health and quality of life for all New Yorkers. Encouraging more drivers to utilize electric vehicles and public transportation will help the state achieve a carbon-free electricity system by 2040 and expedite its transition to a clean energy economy.

“Strategically placing charging stations in Park and Ride lots along New York State’s most traveled highway will maximize use by commuters who take advantage of public transportation and help us achieve our goal of reducing overall statewide carbon emissions 85 percent by 2050,” said Thruway Authority Executive Director Matthew J. Driscoll. “Thruway commuters will now be able to park their electric vehicle and take public transportation or carpool to work and return to a fully charged vehicle at the end of the day. This a win-win, environmentally-friendly investment that will benefit commuters and nearby communities.”

The first four commuter lots, Exit 18 (New Paltz), Exit 21 (Catskills), Exit 43 (Manchester), and Exit 48A (Pembroke) are installed and operational.

New York Power Authority President and CEO Gil C. Quiniones said,

“Electric vehicles should be the easy choice for drivers and at NYPA we are leading the way in making charging as convenient as possible for New Yorkers and visitors. Installing easily accessible charging hubs along our highways will provide a major service to travelers who opt for clean transportation while helping the state achieve Governor Cuomo’s nation-leading electrification and climate protection goals.”

The charging stations are part of a package of major clean transportation initiatives in New York State to expand the use of electric vehicles. A “Make Ready” order recently approved by the New York State Public Service Commission will advance Governor Cuomo’s nation-leading commitment to cleaner mobility by using funding from investor-owned utilities to increase the electrification of the transportation sector, noted as the nation’s largest source of greenhouse gas pollution. Charging stations will be built in key locations to support expanded electric vehicle use with a goal of deploying more than 50,000 chargers by 2025.

Installation of the dual-port Level 2 charging stations along the Thruway began in July and are scheduled to be completed and available for use by the fall. Each installation will support two electric vehicles charging simultaneously at about 7kW. On average, a Level 2 charging station will fully charge an EV battery in approximately 4 to 5 hours. Commuters can park their cars at the Park and Ride lot and return at the end of the workday to a fully charged car.

Installation is planned for the following Commuter Park and Ride Lots over the next two months:

  • Exit 27 (Amsterdam)
  • Exit 30 (Herkimer)
  • Exit 34 (Canastota)
  • Exit 38 (Liverpool)
  • Exit 49 (Depew)

The Thruway Authority is paying for the units and installation and NYPA is responsible for the overall project management.

Make Ready: Paving the Way for EVs

New York’s comprehensive commitment to the expansion of clean transportation options is positioning the State as a national leader in EV deployment and the continued technological advancement of charging infrastructure. In conjunction with EVolve NY and EV Make Ready, other EV charging and deployment initiatives and programs designed to achieve Governor Cuomo’s Charge NY goal of 10,000 EV charging stations by the end of 2021 and 850,000 zero emission vehicles by 2025 are already underway. Under NYSERDA’s Drive Clean Rebate program, more than $35 million in rebates have now resulted in over 25,000 electric vehicle purchases as of June of this year. The “Make Ready” order — approved by the New York State Public Service Commission in July —  will stimulate $1.5 billion in new public and private investments and provide more than $2.6 billion in consumer benefits and economic opportunities by using funding from investor-owned utilities to add even more charging stations that will be built in key locations to support expanded EV use with a goal of deploying more than 50,000 chargers by 2025.

The Make Ready program also calls for every Service Area on the New York State Thruway to have fast charging stations installed by the end of 2024 and for at least 800 new public fast chargers to be installed statewide over the next five years. The electrification policy also calls for the installation of 10 or more fast-charging locations in every Regional Economic Development Council region by the end of 2022.

NYSERDA Acting President and CEO Doreen M. Harris said,

“Governor Cuomo’s sustained commitment to combatting climate change continues to drive meaningful and beneficial changes across our state. Scaling up electric vehicle charging infrastructure is giving more commuters the confidence to choose electric transportation, reduces range anxiety, and bolsters the state’s efforts to reduce harmful emissions for the benefit of our communities and natural resources.”

New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Commissioner Basil Seggos said, “The transportation sector is now New York’s largest source of greenhouse gas emissions and electrifying transportation is critical to meeting the State’s aggressive greenhouse gas emissions reduction goals. The Level 2 charging installations along the New York State Thruway announced today are part of Governor Cuomo’s coordinated multi-agency effort to accelerate the adoption of electric vehicles in New York. Increasing the number of charging ports at publicly accessible locations makes charging more convenient and will help support growth of electric vehicle markets while expanding infrastructure to support a smarter, more sustainable clean energy future.”

Additional Charging Station Updates

Current Charge NY station locations include the Thruway’s DC fast chargers at service areas in Malden, Modena, Plattekill and Ulster, installed in partnership with the Thruway Authority and Nissan North America; Metro North train stations in Westchester County; New York State airports in Albany, Buffalo and Niagara; and municipal parking lots in Queens, Brooklyn and Staten Island. Fast chargers are usually placed along high travel corridors and can charge a vehicle in as little as 20-30 minutes.

In addition to the new EV charging stations at the Thruway commuter lots, NYPA also plans to install six Level 3 DC fast chargers at Thruway service areas in Western New York and the Finger Lakes region by the end of this year.  The chargers are being donated by Nissan North America.

Two existing 50kW DCFC at the Mohawk Welcome Center in Randall have just been replaced with modern chargers to provide more reliable service and allow connection to both CCS and CHAdeMO capable electric vehicles.   The previous units were capable of only supporting CHAdeMO vehicles.

EV chargers are also available at the Western New York and Capital Region Welcome Center on the Thruway system as well as at the Rockland and Westchester landings of the Gov. Mario M. Cuomo Bridge shared bicycle and pedestrian path.

New York State’s Nation-Leading Climate Plan

Governor Cuomo’s nation-leading climate agenda is the most aggressive climate and clean energy initiative in the nation, calling for an orderly and just transition to clean energy that creates jobs and continues fostering a green economy as New York State recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic. Enshrined into law through the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, New York is on a path to achieving its mandated goal of a zero-carbon emissions electricity sector by 2040, including 70 percent renewable energy generation by 2030, and to reach economy wide carbon neutrality. It builds on New York’s unprecedented ramp-up of clean energy including a $3.9 billion investment in 67 large-scale renewable projects across the state, the creation of more than 150,000 jobs in New York’s clean energy sector, a commitment to develop 9,000 megawatts of offshore wind by 2035, and 1,800 percent growth in the distributed solar sector since 2011. Under Governor Cuomo’s leadership, New York will build on this progress and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 85 percent from 1990 levels by 2050, while ensuring that at least 35 percent with a goal of 40 percent of the benefits of clean energy investments benefit disadvantaged communities, and advancing progress towards the state’s 2025 energy efficiency target of reducing on-site energy consumption by 185 TBtus.

Featured photo courtesy Volkswagen Group

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