Michigan’s Department of Environment, Great Lakes, and Energy (EGLE) has awarded US$1.7m in grants for direct current fast chargers (DCFC) along well-travelled routes.

The EGLE Charge Up Michigan Programme grants will partially fund 36 EV DC fast charging stations with a total of 76 plug-in points for cars and light-utility vehicles.

Charging stations recently came online in Marshall, Big Rapids, Gaylord and Cadillac. Others will be operational later this year.

“Michigan is known for building America’s cars and this commitment to future mobility infrastructure continues to keep us at the forefront of needed automotive innovation,” said Michigan Governor, Gretchen Whitmer.

“With partnerships like this between government and private industry, we will take actions that will have a positive and lasting environmental impact while improving transportation infrastructure.”  

Public or private entities can apply for EGLE grants of up to US$70,000 per charger station. The funding is to be used toward the cost of a DC fast charging station, including site preparation, equipment installation, networking fees and signage.

Through the the programme, EGLE, the host site owner and the electric utility that serves the site will each pay for around a third of the cost to install the DC fast charger; the fastest of three options to charge a vehicle battery.

The EGLE grants come from the more than US$9.7m allocated to Michigan from the Volkswagen diesel emissions settlement.

“EVs are expected to represent 33% of new vehicle sales by 2025 and 51% by 2030,” added Michigan’s new Office of Future Mobility and Electrification chief mobility officer, Trevor Pawl.

“EGLE’s investment in DC fast charging shows Michigan is committed to remaining on the leading edge of EV growth globally. The Governor’s new Office of Future Mobility and Electrification will work with EGLE to build on the momentum this programme has created.”

The Michigan Economic Development Corporation’s Office of Future Mobility and Electrification (OFME) was created by Governor Whitmer to address the challenges and opportunities which accompany the future of mobility.

The office will initiate programming and policy initiatives that increase autonomous vehicle and EV investment, as well as job creation in Michigan.

EGLE previously allocated US$4.2m from the Fuel Transformation Programme to pay up to 70% of the costs associated with buying 17 zero-emission buses as well as Level 2 and DC fast charging stations in seven school districts.