Electric Vehicle Charging in New York State gets a Big Boost

One of the ten-year goals set forth in last fall’s New York Energy Storage Roadmap was for New York to accelerate the development of electric vehicle charging infrastructure.  Given this goal, we at NY-BEST were pleased by Governor Cuomo’s announcement of the Charge NY initiative during his State of the State address earlier this year.

The initiative seeks to create a statewide network of up to 3,000 public and workplace charging stations over the next five years as well as to have as many as 40,000 plug-in vehicles on the road during that period.  NYPA and NYSERDA are responsible for implementing various aspects of the initiative.

One of the first actions under the Charge NY initiative is an RFP issued by NYPA on April 8.  This request seeks proposals for the installation of 100 electric vehicle charging stations equipped with smart charging capabilities and extensive monitoring that are to be located at 36 locations that include transportation hubs and public and private parking lots.  Many of these locations will be in the Metropolitan New York area and are expected to be in operation in 2014.

The NYPA program is designed to be a demonstration project for the purpose of validating the performance, system integration and safety of Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE) technologies.  These demonstration sites will also give the general public the opportunity to familiarize themselves with electric vehicles.  EPRI (the Electric Power Research Institute) will play a key role in the project by providing ongoing technical support and due diligence. 

The RFP is available to download from the NYPA website.   Potential bidders need to register on the site to have access to the solicitation.   When you access the procurement opportunities site, the RFP can be found under “Construction and Maintenance” and is entitled “Advanced Technology Electric Vehicle Charging Stations For Public Sites”.   The topic-specific content in the RFP starts on page 123.

Selected contractors will be responsible for the design, fabrication, delivery, installation, start-up, and field quality control of the EVSE systems.  Proposals are due no later than June 20.  NYPA expects to make no more than two awards under this program and it intends to make these awards during the third quarter of 2013 with work to begin immediately.

In the meantime, NYSERDA is leading the way and recently awarded $3.6 million to 14 organizations to install more than 260 electric vehicle charging stations all across the state.  Most of these will be able to accommodate two vehicles at once.

We are gratified to see the State moving forward to promote goals that we singled out in our Energy Storage Roadmap.   As we said in that document, there are many actions that should be taken by all stakeholders including those in both the public and private sectors.   We applaud NYSERDA’s efforts and this new NYPA program and encourage interested NY-BEST members to investigate further.