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Projects Updates for Use Electric Vehicles (EV)

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  1. EV charging

    Some of the comments from parking seem to imply a LOT of external vendor “input” on corded Level 2 chargers. I sense a reluctance about outlet-based charging, even though it can get to extreme scale.  I am not sure the folks have thought much about the energy costs and effective costs of moving a car. We still have the experience of minimal use because of high cost and inconvenience of moving cars with the commercial units in place.


    The Curbside technology certainly makes sense along a street with two-hour parking spaces, and my sense is that we are headed there. In the lots, I just do not see a fundamental problem with installing several dozen outlets and not worrying about the all-day aspect. Of course, today’s discussion was about Curbside and it makes sense in context.


    Philip T. Krein, Ph.D., P.E.

  2. Illinois General Assembly SB1769

    Associated Project(s): 

    Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of SB1769 (

    This will be fun.


    Confirming my intention to be retired by 12/31/2029


    Thank you,



    Sarthak, please read the link and provide a short summary for me and Stacey.

    Thanks, Morgan


    Hi Morgan and Stacey,

    It just says that by Jan 1, 2030, all new passenger vehicles that a state agency purchases or leases has to be zero emission.



  3. Electric vehicle steering committee

    Dear Colleagues,


    Parking is in the process of forming a steering committee to develop university standards and policies regarding electric vehicle charging stations on the UIUC campus.  We will be partnering with Desman Consulting to develop the document and recommendations.  You are receiving this email because we would like you to serve on the steering committee.  We have worked with various divisions within F&S to identify individuals who have expressed interest, and who have in-depth knowledge of university infrastructure and systems.  Please let us know if you want to serve on this committee by next Friday, October 14, and we will set-up a time to meet in the next couple of weeks.


    Thank you,




    Good morning,


    Thank you for agreeing to serve on the EV steering committee. You should have received an invitation to a folder in Box containing the parking study done by Desman. I have also attached it to this email. Please review this document and provide your feedback.




    Maria S. McMullen



    Dear Maria,


    Thank you for sharing the report. I reviewed it and have several comments:

    1. Currently, there is limited public level 2 charging on campus and in the vicinity of campus. Yet we have many visitors to campus who are coming from out of town and may therefore need to charge their vehicle while here. If chargers are (only) added to parking permit facilities, visitors will not have access to them.
    2. Related to the point above, it is unclear if faculty, students, and staff who do not hold a permit for those facilities (but may hold a permit for other parking areas or may not hold a permit at all) will be able to use the chargers.
    3. I wonder if the analysis could take into account commuter driving distance when estimating demand. Many of us with EVs charge at home and rarely need to charge while on campus because the trip is within the range one can travel on a full charge. Consequently, the demand could be lower than expected.
    4. Finally, I think it is important to evaluate the spatial distribution of potential charging locations. We should aim to distribute these in an way the serves all of campus. It is possible that parking facilities are evenly distributed and thus chargers will be as well, but this is not clear from the parking study.





    Dear Maria,


    I would appreciate an update as to when the review period will end and the EV steering committee will meet to discuss the comments and next steps.


    Thank you,





    Thank you for your continued interest in serving on the EV committee. We plan to meet in the next couple of weeks.


    Stay tuned for more info!



  4. Clean vehicle tax credits

    Following is Pete Varney's response to the question from Morgan, "In addition to the Ford Lightning EVs, could we potentially get EV versions of the turtle-top 15-person vans?  Also, is there any discussion about getting Hybrid buses for UI Ride?"

    When discussing EV we have to look at manufacturer availability and operational needs. Car Pool vehicles, 15-pass vans, need to be able to operate both locally and on extended trips ruling out EV due to range restrictions.

    We won’t be looking to replace the first UI Ride bus until FY24/25. We can explore hybrid, but this class of vehicle is different from MTD hybrid buses. Electric may be an option. When the time comes, we’ll discuss with the System office as they put the $$ into UI Ride.

    Thank you,


  5. Ford Lightning allotted to Abbott Power Plant and EV charging station installed

    Abbott Power Plant are the recipients of one the new Ford F150 Lightning Electric Trucks.

    There is a charging station in the alley between the plant addition and scrubber where the vehicle can be parked and charged (see photo below). The plug on the truck is on the side in front of the driver side door.

    The key for the new truck is in the control room at Abbott. The key is a FOB that must be in the vehicle to start it. Similar to other new vehicles, the truck is started when the FOB is in the vehicle with you, you press the brake, and then hit the start button. Since it is electric you of course will not hear the motor engage and start, but the car will “come to life” with the dashboard coming on and displaying. The vehicle can now be put into gear and driven.

    NOTE, the vehicle comes equipped with “engine braking” engaged. So, when you take your foot off the accelerator, the electric motor will “reserve” (turn into a generator) and start slowing down the vehicle (and at the same time charge up the batteries).

    Please be careful when driving the truck for the first time and take some time to get accustomed to how it works.

    Attached Files: 
  6. Transportation iCAP Team Meeting 12/2/22

    The transportation iCAP team met on Friday, December 2nd at 3:00 P.M. CST to discuss electric vehicle charging, and updates on bike shelter procurement for the university. Due to a software error, the meeting minutes were not recorded.

    Link to meeting recording:

  7. Metric for EV charging stations - Suggestion by Ria

    Hi Morgan,

    The proposed metrics (i.e., number of level 2 chargers) are certainly interesting. Could we also track the chargers' utilization? My group can help with such an analysis as needed. I am happy to discuss opportunities for a more comprehensive assessment of shared charging use by the university fleet and other passenger vehicles in the university. Effective charging sharing and management schemes will play an important role as electric vehicle adoption and use grow. Thanks in advance!

    Best regards,



    Eleftheria (Ria) Kontou, PhD

    Assistant Professor
    Civil and Environmental Engineering

    University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

    New publication: Evacuation route planning for alternative fuel vehicles

  8. Insider article on 9/21/22: Ahead of the Curve and All Electric

  9. EV charging stations and a personalized update about EVs - Robert O'Daniell

    Following is an email from Robert O'Daniell regarding EV charging stations and his experience during his recent road trip.

    From: Robert O'Daniell
    Sent: Wednesday, September 14, 2022 2:58 PM
    To: White, Morgan; Prasad, Sarthak; Kontou, Eleftheria
    Subject: A personalized update about EVs


    Hi - I did another roadtrip this weekend.  At a DCFC I chatted with a guy on a longer road trip that was intent on charging to 100%.   He was there a very long time as the charger slows remarkably as they go beyond 90%. For him to charge from 90% to 100% would take 15 minutes to get 25 miles. I spent 12 minutes at Target and got 75 miles of charge. 


    As this year has rolled on, attempts to improve my EV charging survey has waned. There has been decreasing willingness of people participating and I was having doubts about the questions I was asking.   So I have stopped.  And then the EV sections of the Inflation Reduction Act turned everything on its head.  

    Even the piece by Kontou that the July 28th IDOT WebEx meeting mentioned  as cutting edge shows its age in only a little over two years.  ( first a disclaimer - inspite of being a math major at UI 50 years ago, the equations and graphs in her report are a little too esoteric for me.)  But some of the basic information  demonstrates remarkable changes,  It mentioned 50 kw charging as fast, now NEVI mandates a minimum of 150kw (350 kw is now fast).   Mentioned charging locations that numbered at 1300.  Now Tesla alone has 1200 supercharger locations,  The mentioned EVgo has dropped from prominence, now Electrify America from its infancy in 2019 now leads the way. Electrify America currently has 800 and most are up to NEVI standards.   EVs charging up on off-peak hours takes advantage of unused capacity at those times ( and gets a discount). And now with two way charging, EVs can put power back on the grid at some heavy peak use periods. (Known as V2G)  Predictions of some EV issues will be difficult.

    Recent V2G articles.


    BMW, Ford, GM will help incentivize California EV drivers to charge off-peak


    Can a Garage Full of Revel Taxis Stop the Next Blackout?


    Brooklyn-based Vehicle-to-Grid Bidirectional Station Charging back into NYC Grid | EnergyTech




    So - EV charging will have two opposite effects on the grid.  Occasionally add to a peak load. But also help balance the load on the grid by taking some energy during off-peak hours and putting it back during peak load pressures. 


    EV charging also has another opposition.   DCFC continuing to get faster and  Levels 1 & 2 staying the same or getting slower. 

    The two factors are the "60% rule" and the increasing acceptance of convenience charging. 


     The 60% rule is to only charge between 20% and 80% (the 60% in the middle).   This protects battery life and has the advantage of saving time. Saved time is illustrated in the opening paragraph of this email.  3 times the charge in slightly less time.


    Accepting convenience charging is maximizing charging convenience.  Speed at DCFC.  And if its not convenient, I don’t charge (even if free). A different take on “Willingness To Pay” (if the charger is 100 yards away and I’ll only get 10 miles, why bother)


    Faster = = DCFC & the NEVI guidelines. DCFC is at least twice as fast when charging from 20% to 30% than it is when  charging from 70% to 80%.  Nobody (should) wants to charge to 100%, where the charging speed is similar to Level 2 charger.  Lots of current EVs charge faster than my car, and I can add 75 miles in the time it takes to use the rest room.  With the NEVI 50 mile interval, it guarantees roadtrips with minimal times as drivers plan better. 

    Slower = =  For my home, I spent $200 on the slowest level 2 charger available (16 amp).  Even if my VW is down to 20% when I go to bed, my "slow" charger will add enough range to get from CU to Woodridge ( 142 miles) when I get up.  In the 8 hour “off peak” window, 90 miles can be added. 


    Since few people in this area need 75 miles to get home from work, those that need to add charge before leaving work for home can get what they need from the slowest level 2 chargers.  This could save money for places like UI by reducing the cost of the EVSE and the necessary wiring for them.  It would be interesting to know if any workers at UI would  pay extra to rent a reserved parking space with a charger. (For those with longer commutes or no chargers at their apartment complex)


    We need to get our municipal leaders to get involved with IDOT and get one or more of the DCFC locations paid for with Federal money (NEVI program). Those DCFCs could fulfill all of UI needs for short term EV charging and the need for level 1 or 2 charging spaces.   But as a visible sign of support of sustainability issues, some should still be there. 


    Level 2 destination chargers scattered throughout the community will always be both used and appreciated,  As EV drivers learn the most efficient ways to charge, their WTP for level 2 charging will wane.   WTP for DCFC will always be there.

    Thank you for your time. 


    ps.  as a side note - a few details to go but I will be doing an EV interest group at OLLI soon.  (OLLI - UI affiliate of Osher Life Long Learning Institute)


    Robert K. O'Daniell

    Photographer Emeritus-News-Gazette

  10. Sarthak met with Gabe Lewis to talk about Electric Vehicles and EV charging

    On May 24, Sarthak Prasad met with Gabe Lewis to talk about EVs. Gabe is the Transportation Planner at the Champaign County Regional Planning Commission (CCRPC) and he currently leads the RPC Tech Committee which consists of 7 members – Champaign, Urbana, Savoy, Rantoul, St. Joseph, Mahomet, and Champaign County. Most recently, they had been talking about the feasibility of EVs in urban as well as the rural areas in the county.

    We talked about the US DOT's Charging Forward, an EV toolkit, that is primarily focused on EV Charging in the rural areas:

    We also talked about Clean City Coalition. State of Illinois does not have a coalition, but Chicago has one and we could potentially reach out to them:

    Also discussed the federal funding available through National EV Infrastructure (NEVI), Carbon Reduction Program (CRP), State and Local Planning for Energy (, and EV Pro Lite (