Get Your Kicks (And E-Car Charges) On Route 66!

It’s immortalized in song as “the highway that’s the best” for a reason…and now, even more so!  The United States' storied stretch of roadway, Route 66, will be going green in a major way…

Oldschool neon can now be lit by futuristic solar power...
what a trip!
(Image courtesy

Rolling for 2,500 miles from Chicago to Los Angeles, the historic highway is set for some futuristic updates.  According to, new charging stations for electric cars, as well as possible updates including solar roadways and electric buses, will grace the face of Western America.

Thanks to efforts from various auto manufacturers, along with technical help from the University Of California Davis, eight cities along the route will feature at least one fast-charging station.  Additionally, in the state of Illinois, a network of electric vehicle charging stations spans the area from Lake Michigan to the Mississippi River.

A smattering of stations in California...with more to follow!
(Image courtesy

The plan will ultimately offer a massive reduction in use of fossil fuels, and will deter environmental consequences from the usage thereof.

Gustavo Collantes, of the UC Davis Policy Institute and leader of the Zero Emission MAP initiative, explained, “This infrastructure has the clear potential to save drivers money while delivering environmental benefits to the state and the nation." 

And it’s not just the cars that will be getting a spark.  Missouri’s highway department has discussed implementing a project to use road-embedded solar panels to provide power to nearby rest stops.  An Idaho-based company called Solar Roadways has already worked on creating the physical panels, which would be 70-pound hexagons embedded with solar electronics under a panel of tempered glass.  The glass is engineered to support the weight of semi trucks and would retain a traction surface similar to asphalt.

Prototype panels from Solar Roadways.
While the technology is still under scrutiny, it's an innovative idea.
(Image courtesy

Various hotels and motels along the way have begun investing in e-car charging stations as well as other green technology (Route 66 IS en route to the eternally Earth-conscious Los Angeles, after all.)  The green revolution is a'rolling down the highway...and maybe towards you, next!

  We hope Tesla has the foresight to bring back some 
classic-model cars in electric form.
That'd be boss.


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