2.17   Clarify DOT’s role in charging infrastructure and research charging network needs

Reason for action


The DOT may be interested in building charging infrastructure. As such, it will need to research the reasons as well as the best places for building infrastructure. Unlike cities and MPOs, DOTs are responsible for the entire state transportation system and must accommodate interregional and interstate travel, even if certain routes are relatively unused compared to others; for example, DOTs build and maintain rural routes despite the fact that dollar cost per passenger mile traveled is much more than densely populated areas. Similarly, PEV charging along highway corridors will be much less frequent than in urban areas, but DOTs must balance promoting regional travel with the consumer demand for corridor charging. Therefore, DOTs must coordinate with local entities to determine how it can best complement the local, state, and interstate charging network.

Implementing the action

  • Determine the status of charger deployment in localities across the state (see Action 2.16). Governments, nonprofit foundations, and private entities may all be building charging networks in the state. Given that the DOT is responsible for state transportation, the DOT can coordinate build-out so that local charging networks also form a coherent regional charging network.

  • Identify key travel corridors where there are “dead spots” in the EV charging network.

  • Decide whether to focus on coordinating more local build-out in areas with high PEV densities, or connectivity.

  • Conduct a literature search and/or ask organizations that have previously conducted driver behavior and charging studies about charger siting. This action is tied with Action 2.1 Share best practices by participating in national and regional dialogues because some states and DOTs have already conducted their own charging station siting studies and developed best practices. Previous work on charger siting can be refined and modified to fit a state’s unique situation. Spotlight: Washington State DOT and Puget Sound Regional Council have released a guide for installing charging infrastructure for local municipalities. Spotlight: Oregon DOT’s charging station host site specifications for the West Coast Green Highway can be used for other states.



Knowledge of charging behavior helps charging station installers (including the DOT itself) and charging network providers optimize the location of equipment (see Action 3.3). Following the collection of this knowledge, publicizing charging behavior from PEV drivers can help assuage drivers with range anxiety.

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