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Last week Illinois governor Pat Quinn announced that the state and local governments and private sector businesses would create a network of electric vehicle charging stations along the prairie state’s portion of Route 66.

This 483km (300 mile) sector of Route 66 stretches from the state’s largest city Chicago, on the shores of Lake Michigan, to St Louis, which straddles the Mississippi River that separates Illinois and Missouri.

Illinois is investing US$1 million ($1.18 million) in the project, which will see at least one charging station installed in eight towns and cities along the route: Plainfield, Dwight, Pontiac, Normal, Lincoln, Springfield, Carlinville and Edwardsville.

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Each charging station will include at least one fast-charging outlet, equipped with either SAE or CHAdeMO plugs, and one 240-volt charging point.

Installation of the EV infrastructure has already begun and the roll-out is expected to be completed by the middle of 2015.

The town of Normal already has a significant amount of electric car infrastructure, as it plays host to Mitsubishi North America’s headquarters and manufacturing plant. The facilities, which were formerly shared with Chrysler, currently produces the RVR/Outlander Sport/ASX for both local consumption and export.

Other automakers who are supporting the Illinois Route 66 Electric Corridor project are BMW and Nissan.




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