Drivers of electric cars who use the Pennsylvania Turnpike can now recharge their batteries at two of the highway's service plazas.
Turnpike officials cut the ribbon Monday on electric car charging stations at the Bowmansville service plaza, which is located on the eastbound side of the highway, between the Reading and Morgantown interchanges, in Brecknock Twp., Lancaster Co.
Car charging stations are also now available at the King of Prussia service plaza, which is located on the westbound side of the highway at milepost 328 in Upper Merion Twp., Montgomery Co.
"Within the next two weeks, two more service plazas will have electric charging stations: Oakmont plaza in Allegheny County and New Stanton plaza in Westmoreland County," said Craig Shuey, the turnpike's chief operating officer. "Eventually, the plan is to offer EV charging at all 17 service plazas that dot the Pennsylvania Turnpike system."
The turnpike commission is supplying $500,000 to help pay the cost of transformers, electric lines and meters.
CarCharging Group Inc., which matched a $1 million grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, is providing and operating the charging equipment and services.
"We are delighted to partner with the PTC and DEP to offer EV charging services to travelers along the Pa. Turnpike," said Andy Kinard, president, CarCharging. "We are proud to expand the locations and support drivers as they travel throughout Pennsylvania."
The Blink Level II Electric Vehicle stations provide 220 volts with 32 amps of power. The cost to charge is $1 per hour for Blink InCard members and $2 per hour for customers using a credit card. A free Blink InCard is available on the network's website, officials said.