BMW has finished a nearly two-year project to bring 100 electric vehicle charging stations to America’s national parks.
The automaker partnered in 2017 with several U.S. agencies, including the National Park Foundation, National Park Service and Department of Energy, to donate 100 electric vehicle charging stations in and near national parks throughout the United States.
More than 90 of the charging stations have been installed. The remaining few will open this month, the company said.
The effort is small compared to some of the broader infrastructure campaigns in the U.S. But it has the potential to ease the EV charging desert that exists on the open road and at national parks. And as more electric vehicles come on the market, the demand for these chargers will only increase.
The charging stations, which include Level 2 and DC fast chargers, are concentrated in popular areas where there’s a strong electric vehicle market. The agencies and BMW also considered the distance from nearby charging locations.
BMW’s charging stations can be found in the Everglades and the Grand Canyon, two of the most visited U.S. national parks, as well Death Valley in California, Rainier and Olympic national parks in Washington and Cape Cod National Seashore in Massachusetts.
BMW worked with the National Park Service and National Park Foundation to identify sites, address technical considerations and coordinate with state and local authorities.
“The automobile has long been central to the great American vacation in national parks,” said National Park Service Deputy Director P. Daniel Smith. “While our treasured landscapes offer familiar vistas time after time, the automobile has changed greatly, and parks want to meet the needs of our visitors who drive electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles.”