Six Key Points About NEVI—the National EV Infrastructure Program

This article provides an update about the National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Program (NEVI), detailing its progress, challenges and potential future direction. It offers valuable commentary and insights into the evolving EV charging infrastructure and important things to note when applying for a state NEVI program.

As 2024 ramps up, we’re entering the second year of the National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Program (NEVI). This federal program has dedicated $5 billion to help states build a national network of 500,000 electric vehicle charging stations along 75,000 miles of major U.S. highways.

Allison Capper

Based on lessons learned during these early years of implementation, the NEVI program plans to update its application process each year. Here are six key points everyone in the EV charging market should know about the NEVI program:

NEVI Key Points

  • All 50 states plus Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia submitted their proposals before the launch of the NEVI program. This shows that states have a strong interest in implementing their strategies and releasing funding to select projects. They’re engaged in helping to build out their Alternative Fuel Corridors (AFCs) and understand the importance of working toward improving charging access.
  • Many states expect to fully build out their AFCs and still have funds left over. The Joint Office of Energy and Transportation expects nearly $3.5 billion remaining for states to deploy additional charging capacity along AFCs or in non-AFC locations. Texas has already built these types of projects into its plan and expects to build out its AFCs in the first round of funding, moving on to rural and small urban areas in subsequent years.
  • Before the NEVI program’s start, only a few states offered state-level grant funding for charging infrastructure projects. This inexperience, along with the surge of interest in the program, caused many states to become overwhelmed and delay the timing of their NEVI programs. For example, Kansas was expecting an opening date of early June 2023, but the RFP was not officially released until late August. Some states like Connecticut will not be opening their first round of NEVI applications until early this year. Other states like Wisconsin are on indefinite hold due to issues with regulatory incompatibilities. Meanwhile, Ohio has already released its second request for proposals.
  • Though the NEVI program is geared toward charging light-duty vehicles, many states have opted to include future-proofing capabilities for medium- and heavy-duty vehicle charging. Projects that include options like pull-through charging and accommodate greater demands and power levels may score higher than those catering only to light-duty passenger vehicles.
  • Even though each state program has base requirements set by the Federal Highway Administration, the categories a project may be scored on vary greatly. Some states may put the most weight on total amount of grant funding requested, while others place more importance on a team’s previous experience and qualifications. When planning a proposal for NEVI funding, it is critical that you know your state’s scoring mechanisms and understand how you compare to other applicants.

Here are some of the publicly known facts about the types of projects that were proposed and awarded grants at the time of publication:

  1. Most application bids were proposing the NEVI minimum of four ports per site, though 71% had a charger power rating greater than 150 kW.
  2. The average funding requested per bid was $618,671.
  3. Gas stations and truck stops were the most common winning site hosts, with 66% successful bids.
  4. Tesla and Pilot Travel Center combined accounted for one-third of winning bids.
  5. 83% of known bids proposed more than the minimum cost share of 20%.

We’ve been through an entire year of NEVI plan implementation, but there is more to come. Only about half of the states opened their application period by the end of 2023, equal to about $392 million in grant funding released.

At Faith Technologies Incorporated, we have a dedicated grants and incentives team that is continually tracking NEVI program updates. If you’re interested in learning about a particular program or have a project you think might be a good candidate for NEVI funding, contact us today.

Allison Capper, an energy policy specialist at EnTech Solutions, supports customers in reaching their clean energy goals by uncovering what’s possible from a policy and funding standpoint, investigating financial resources to help unlock the value of clean energy.