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West Coast Electric Highway expands to Washington and extends to Canada


May 30, 2012
By Anthony Capkun

May 30, 2012 – The border-to-border vision of the West Coast Electric Highway in the States moved closer to reality today with the opening of new electric vehicle (EV) charging sites, extending the highway to the Canadian border and opening it to EV drivers from both countries.

The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT), along with electric charging station partner AeroVironment, opened 10 new public charging stations: seven along Interstate 5 and three along U.S Route 2 in northern Washington that provide EV drivers the ability to travel emission-free from Seattle to the Canadian border.

“Today moves us a giant step closer to the day when we can drive our electric cars from Bellingham, Wash., to San Diego, Calif., along Interstate 5, secure in the knowledge we can quickly recharge our vehicles along the way,” said Washington governor Chris Gregoire.

Eight of the 10 new charging stations in Washington feature AeroVironment’s DC fast chargers, which deliver a full charge for a nearly-depleted EV battery in less than 30 minutes. All locations include AeroVironment Level 2 chargers, which provide EV drivers with convenient charging while they grab a bite to eat, run errands, etc.

The West Coast Electric Highway is a vision for a transportation corridor from the Canadian to Mexican borders, connecting California, Oregon and Washington along I-5 that fully supports EVs.

“The West Coast Electric Highway is an outstanding example of public-private collaboration between partners including WSDOT, AeroVironment, local governments and businesses, and EV drivers,” said Rogers Weed, Washington director of commerce. “Together our efforts are helping electric vehicle-related businesses emerge and grow, providing long-term energy and economic benefits for Washington state.”