MDOT enters 5-year partnership to build first public in-road EV charging system in Detroit

Electrified roadway will be near old Michigan Central train station

FILE - A 2021 Ford Mustang Mach E charges at a Ford dealer in Wexford, Pa on May 6, 2021. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic) (Keith Srakocic, Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved)

DETROIT – The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) has announced an agreement with a company to work towards building a first of its kind in-road charging system for electric vehicles in Detroit.

MDOT says it has entered into a five-year agreement with Electreon to develop the pilot project, with an eye towards expanding. MDOT and Electreon will work to develop the wireless electric road system.

“This agreement helps solidify Michigan as the U.S. leader in developing and implementing a wireless in-road charging network,” State Transportation Director Paul C. Ajegba said. “We now can work toward better policy and regulatory framework that provides a welcoming environment for this unique technology. Ultimately, the research and work conducted on this project will help lead to large-scale deployment across Michigan and the U.S.”

Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer announced the pilot project earlier this year. The roadway would charge electric vehicles while they are in motion or stationary. Electreon has contracts for similar roadways in Israel, Sweden, Italy and Germany.

The roadway will be located in the Michigan Central district, where Ford Motor Co. is restoring the old Michigan Central train station to develop self-driving vehicles. The current draft of Michigan’s plan to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050 calls for infrastructure like charging roadways to be built in Michigan to accommodate 2 million electric vehicles on roads by 2030.

“The potential for electrifying roads and cities is practically endless and working together with MDOT we are reshaping the future of transportation,” said Oren Ezer, CEO and co-founder of Electreon. “Through ongoing collaboration on our Detroit project, MDOT has proven to be innovative leaders in the industry. We’re excited to enter into this agreement to create a blueprint for scaling wireless charging for all EVs across Michigan and the U.S. and look forward to aligning with additional DOTs in the future.”

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Ken Haddad has proudly been with WDIV/ClickOnDetroit since 2013. He also authors the Morning Report Newsletter and various other newsletters, and helps lead the WDIV Insider team. He's a big sports fan and is constantly sipping Lions Kool-Aid.