The “West Coast Electric Highway” is an extensive network of electric vehicle (EV) DC fast charging stations located every 25 to 50 miles along Interstate 5 and other major roadways.
Electric vehicle drivers can now grab a cup of coffee or shop while they charge up at places such as shopping centers, fueling stations and restaurants within a half mile of highway interchanges. The fast charge technology allows drivers to re-charge mass-produced all-electric vehicles such as the Nissan Leaf and Mitsubishi “i MiEV” in 30 minutes or less. Each location also includes Level 2 equipment to re-charge most plug in electric vehicles such as the Ford Focus and Chevrolet Volt.
The West Coast Electric Highway connects electric vehicle drivers with fast charging between EV-friendly communities along Interstate 5 and other major roadways. The initiative complements The EV Project, a $230 million US Department of Energy project to deploy electric vehicle charging infrastructure in six states including Washington, Oregon, and California. Located at strategic points along Interstate 5, the stations provide a backbone for EV charging along the corridor connecting cities with robust EV charging such as Vancouver, British Columbia, Seattle and Portland.
State Departments of Transportation are collaborating on the West Coast Electric Highway. The Washington State Department of Transportation leads the charge on the Washington segment and the Oregon Department of Transportation leads the charge on the Oregon segment.
At the end of 2012, when the combined projects are complete, the West Coast will have the nation’s longest and most robust charging network with thousands of Level 2 charging pedestals and more than 100 DC fast chargers.
The Electric Highway gives electric vehicle drivers “range confidence” that recharging is available should they want to travel between communities or make long distance road trips. Knowing that charging is easy and convenient helps encourage residents and businesses to buy and drive plug-in electric vehicles. Increasing the market demand for electric vehicles helps reduce the transportation sector's impact upon the environment and dependency on foreign oil. By setting the stage for the EV industry to thrive in a clean economy, the Electric Highway helps spur industry growth and new jobs.
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See a map and overview (pdf 516 kb) of the West Coast Electric Highway spanning the 585 miles of Interstate 5 from the Canadian border to the California border.
More than 40 DC fast chargers are open to the public in the Pacific Northwest. Many websites and mobile applications provide lists and maps of charging locations. See our STATIONS Web page for resources on charging locations and paying for your charge.
West Coast Electric Highway brochure
(pdf 516 kb)