New York City Mayor Eric Adams announced a series of major milestones in three critical efforts to facilitate the transition to electric vehicles across the city.
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Through initiatives spearheaded by the New York City Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS), the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT), and the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC), the Adams administration is accelerating and facilitating the transition to electric vehicles among the city’s vehicle fleet, private vehicles, and the for-hire vehicle industry.
As of September 2022, DCAS has reached its 2025-goal of transitioning 4,000 vehicles in the city fleet to electric vehicles — three years ahead of schedule. DOT has advanced projects to install publicly accessible electric vehicle charging stations in the Bronx and Brooklyn.
And DOT, in partnership with the TLC, will offer discounts to TLC-licensed drivers for the use of fast charging hubs. The transition to electric vehicles is helping to improve air quality, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and offer cost savings on maintenance and fuel costs for city government and New York City taxpayers.
This month, the city surpassed 4,050 electric vehicles in the citywide fleet managed by DCAS, all replacing fossil-fuel powered models. This milestone surpasses the New York City Clean Fleet Plan goal of adding 4,000 electric vehicles by 2025 — three years ahead of schedule.
The electric fleet includes a wide range of vehicle types and categories from over 200 Ford Mustang Mach Es (used mostly for law enforcement purposes) to nearly 850 GM Bolts. DCAS has also completed orders for almost 300 Ford E Transit cargo vans and submitted its first order for an all-electric Ford pickup truck. These units are expected to arrive this winter and will be the largest medium-duty purchase of electric vehicles for the fleet. DCAS expects to own and operate over 4,500 EVs as soon as June 2023.
DCAS has also ordered seven electric garbage trucks for the New York City Department of Sanitation (DSNY); marking the city’s effort to transition these iconic trucks to an all-electric model. The agency plans to order seven all-electric sweepers and 30 plug-in hybrid electric sweepers for DSNY. The agency also plans to order all-electric buses for the New York City Department of Corrections, along with box trucks and pickup trucks, to carry out other critical services citywide.
In addition to increasing the electric vehicle fleet, DCAS also operates the largest electric vehicle charging network in New York State, with nearly 1,300 charging ports available to fleet units. DCAS will deploy another 600 charging ports in the next 18 months.
DOT is advancing two major electric-vehicle charging initiatives that will speed the transition to electric vehicles among privately-owned vehicles across the city. First, the agency issued a contract for the installation of fast charging stations at the White Plains Road Municipal Parking Field in the Bronx and the Bensonhurst #1 Municipal Parking Field in Brooklyn. Each site will be equipped for four direct-current (DC) fast chargers, which will allow drivers to quickly charge their electric vehicles.
Additionally, DOT is kicking off an effort with the New York Power Authority to procure over 150 Level 2 electric-vehicle chargers that will be installed across 12 municipal parking fields in the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island.
These efforts represent progress towards the goals of DOT’s charging plan: “Electrifying New York,” including growing the city-operated fast charging network to over 80 plugs and equipping 20 percent of all spaces in municipal public parking lots and garages with Level 2 chargers by 2025. These projects also build on the city’s existing PlugNYC electric vehicle charging network, which provides affordable and convenient charging for New Yorkers at 100 curbside Level 2 chargers and fast charging stations at the Delancey-Essex and Court Square Municipal Parking Garages.
In an effort to support electric vehicle adoption, DOT is working in partnership with the TLC to offer discounted electric vehicle charging to TLC-licensed drivers at DOT’s fast charging hubs in different boroughs. DOT currently has two fast charging hubs, at the Court Square Municipal Garage in Queens and the Delancey-Essex Municipal Garage in Manhattan.
Starting September 30, 2022, TLC-licensed drivers will be able sign to up for a 15-percent discount on charging at both locations via the TLC website. TLC-licensed drivers will have access to fast and affordable charging in convenient locations, with additional charging stations opening soon. ■