Rivian is partnering with the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) to install electric vehicle charging stations at Tenessee State Parks. The charging stations are likely to be installed at all 56 State Parks in the State of Tennessee, “depending on the availability of electricity and planned future park upgrades.”
The TDEC made the announcement on its website on Wednesday.
“Tennessee is at the forefront of innovation and infrastructure development, and we’re committed to the future of the automotive industry,” State Governor Bill Lee said. “This collaboration will support Tennessee jobs and enhance our already unmatched state parks.”
Rivian has been working on releasing its first electric vehicle, the R1T pickup truck, later this year. Recently, the company announced that its anticipated July deliveries had been pushed back to September. However, the company is still preparing its owners to have a wide variety of options regarding its charging infrastructure. Earlier this year, Rivian unveiled the Adventure Network, composed of 3,500 fast chargers and 600 total sites by 2023.
The partnership with the TDEC matches perfectly with Rivian’s ideals for its products. Since Day 1, it seems that Rivian has catered to the outdoorsman and adventurers of the world. Its vehicles are primed for easy navigation through some of the toughest terrain imaginable thanks to its quad-motor powertrain, allowing for up to three feet of wading depth, 11,000 pounds of towing capacity, and a 3-second 0-60 time.
The adoption of electric vehicles in Tennessee primes Rivian for the perfect partnership with the TDEC, Commissioner David Salyers said. “As Tennesseans increasingly rely on electric vehicles, our state parks can play a significant role to enable recreation in all corners of our state. TDEC is committed to clean air, and the shift toward electric vehicles is an excellent step forward for air quality.”
Rivian will oversee the installation and design of Level 2 chargers that would charge any EV on the road. Offering 11.5 kW of power, this will be perfect for any EV owner who wishes to charge their vehicle overnight or for someone who just wants to stop by for a day trip. The chargers at the Tennessee State Parks will initially be free, according to the press release from the TDEC, and any future cost depends on systemwide utilization to recover electricity costs.
Rivian will cover network access fees, equipment service, and maintenance for 10 years. Upgrades associated with the charger installation will be at no cost to the state or its taxpayers.
Commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development, Mark Ezell, said “We are very excited for this partnership, and for TDEC and Tennessee State Parks’ commitment to sustainable travel, ensuring residents and visitors enjoy the state for generations to come. Tennessee offers unsurpassed natural beauty, and we’re thrilled this project will bring visitors to state parks, rural communities, and cities.”