U.S. Department of Transportation Releases Toolkit to Help Rural Communities Build Out Electric Vehicle Charging Infrastructure

February 3, 2022
A vehicle traveling on a two-lane road in a rural setting with green pastures and trees on both sides of the road.

Join us for a free webinar on February 9 to learn more!

Today USDOT released a new, free toolkit that will help rural communities and businesses across the country plan and fund electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure. This toolkit is being released in advance of upcoming announcements from President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, which will make nearly $5 billion available to states and an additional $2.5 billion available via competitive grant programs to accelerate the deployment of a national network of EV charging stations.

“Drivers in rural areas often have the longest commutes and spend the most money on gas, which means big benefits from having access to electric cars and pickup trucks if they are affordable and easy to charge where they live and drive,” said Secretary Pete Buttigieg. “The investments in the President’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law for a national EV charging network are an important step toward ensuring that EVs aren’t a luxury item and that everyone in America can benefit from clean transportation.” You can join the Secretary for a Facebook live event on February 3rd at 1:20 PM EST to hear more about how USDOT is working with rural communities to build an EV future for all Americans.

This toolkit, and upcoming funding opportunities, will help ensure that all Americans have the opportunity to benefit from the lower operating costs, reduced maintenance needs, and improved performance that EVs provide. Any rural entity—such as an individual property owner or business, a town, a Tribe, or a planning agency—can use the toolkit to identify key project partners and available funding or financing to help make their project a reality. The toolkit includes various EV infrastructure planning tools, as well as a comprehensive list of relevant Federal funding programs and initial points of contact.

The Department will host a webinar presenting the toolkit on February 9th at 1:30 PM EST to help rural communities get started. This webinar is free and open to all; register here. Please share the details with interested stakeholders and through your own communication channels. We look forward to your participation.

Over the coming weeks and months, USDOT will hold additional workshops with rural communities and stakeholders to obtain feedback on the toolkit and provide information to help rural communities get started with EV charging projects. An updated toolkit will be available this summer that incorporates feedback from these workshops, expanded information on new programs, and new information on topics such as transit and school bus electrification.

The Rural Opportunities to Use Transportation for Economic Success (ROUTES) Initiative aims to address disparities in rural transportation infrastructure by developing user-friendly tools and information, aggregating DOT resources into a single web resource, and providing technical assistance. If you want to learn more about ROUTES, or how it can help your community, visit the ROUTES website and reach the ROUTES team at rural@dot.gov.