Federal funds approved for electric charging stations, road expansion projects in Minnesota

Millions of dollars in federal funding will soon be headed to Minnesota for the installation of additional electric charging stations across the state, as well as the expansion of a highway in Carver County.

Wednesday, the Biden administration approved federal funds for a national electric vehicle charging network.

Minnesota is among 34 states, in addition to Puerto Rico, that will be a part of the network.

The state is expected to receive $68 million in federal funds over five years for the project.

Third parties will be working with the state to install the chargers along Interstate 35 and Interstate 94.

In addition, $10 million will be headed to Carver County from the Infrastructure for Rebuilding America grant program to be used in a road expansion project.

According to the White House, the county plans to expand about five miles of U.S. 212 from a two-lane undivided highway to a four-lane divided expressway between County Road 36 in Cologne to Tacoma Avenue. In addition, the county also plans to build a grade-separated interchange.

Federal officials say there have been three fatalities at the intersection of U.S. 212 and County Road 51 during the past five years, with a higher than average crash rate in the full project area. They add many of the crashes were related to freight and could be avoided by the expansion, adding rumble strips and lowering the number of conflict intersections.

The grant program is used for highway, freight and rail projects.