City of Philadelphia Receives Alternative Fuels Incentive Grant from Pennsylvania DEP to Add Electric Vehicles to Local Car Share Fleets

Philadelphia, November 16, 2010 – Governor Edward G. Rendell and the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection announced today that the City of Philadelphia’s Mayor’s Office of Sustainability will receive a $140,000 Alternative Fuels Incentive Grant (AFIG) to purchase and install chargers for 20 electric vehicles (EV) in Philadelphia.  The chargers will serve 18 EVs that PhillyCarShare and Zipcar will add to their fleets and provide two parking spaces with charging services available the public.  By displacing 18 traditional car share vehicles, the project is expected to cut CO2 emissions by 61,000 pounds per year.

Greenworks Philadelphia sets a goal to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions 20% by 2015,” said Mayor Michael A. Nutter. “Adding electric vehicles to Philadelphia’s successful car share programs will give thousands of Philadelphia drivers an affordable opportunity to experience new EV technology and help the City reach our ambitious sustainability goals.”

Electric vehicle technology is well suited for car share use because the average car share trip is between 30 and 40 miles long, well within the range of one battery charge.  Using EVs in high-mileage fleet settings such as car share programs also increases the environmental benefit of the vehicles by replacing a large number of traditional fuel vehicle miles driven.

The project is an important first step in strengthening Philadelphia’s EV infrastructure.  It will help the City understand and improve EV charger installation permitting, give PECO valuable information about how chargers interact with the existing grid, and provide data on how electric vehicles perform in Philadelphia’s weather and traffic conditions.

“This project starts solving the chicken and egg problem by creating an electric car public charging infrastructure that will then encourage people to purchase and use electric cars,” said DEP Secretary John Hanger. “The project also shows that Philadelphia can be a leader in the electric car revolution that will create enormous health, environmental and economic benefits.”

Further information on the City of Philadelphia’s Greenworks Philadelphia sustainability plan and the Mayor’s Office of Sustainability can be found at

For more information on PA DEP’s AFIG program, visit:




Bridge reopens to traffic one month ahead of schedule and on-budget

Philadelphia, November 6, 2010 – Mayor Michael A. Nutter announced the reopening of the South Street Bridge to all traffic. The Mayor was joined at a ribbon-cutting ceremony by City, State and Federal government officials as well as community leaders to celebrate the major infrastructure development. The $67 million reconstruction project began on December 8, 2008 and is opening one month ahead of the anticipated 24-month schedule. The new 1,800-ft. long bridge and viaduct will reopen to traffic during the evening of November 6th.

More than 30,000 drivers, transit riders, bicyclists and pedestrians are expected to use the bridge each day. The new bridge will feature dedicated bicycle lanes that will be 6-ft-4-in wide. The sidewalks of the new bridge will be 2-ft. wider than the sidewalks on the old bridge. The new bridge will also feature four pedestrian look-out areas beneath the glass towers which will be lit with LED lighting. In addition, ramp and stairway connections are being constructed so that there will be direct connections to the future extension of the Schuylkill River trail. New pedestrian entrances will provide access to the University Regional Rail Station and the University of Pennsylvania’s Hollenback Hall.

“We’re thrilled to deliver the new South Street bridge to Philadelphians on budget and ahead of schedule,” said Mayor Nutter. “Thanks to a collaborative effort, this crumbling structure that became a growing concern for more than a decade has been transformed into a model of a strong government-community partnership.”

“We have a beautiful design that will withstand the test of time,” said Deputy Mayor for Transportation and Utilities Rina Cutler. “We have a truly complete bridge, so whether your travel by car, bus, foot or bike, the new South Street Bridge is a safe and comfortable way to cross the Schuylkill.”

“The reconstruction of the bridge is the largest and most complex project in the history of the Streets Department,” said Streets Commissioner Clarena Tolson. “We’re pleased to present this vital link between the communities of West Philadelphia and Center City one month ahead of schedule, which will ultimately relieve traffic congestion and travel delays in the immediate vicinity.”

The South Street Bridge Coalition- a group comprised of elected officials, community leaders, business owners and civic groups- was instrumental in the design and development process. The Coalition worked with the City to develop a bicycle, pedestrian and vehicle-friendly design. The architectural firm H2L2 was commissioned to be part of the design team.



Awards will assist Philadelphia companies in bringing products to market.
Philadelphia, October 28, 2010 – Mayor Michael A. Nutter announced that the City would offer grants to three local businesses developing cutting edge green technologies. This effort, titled the Greenworks Pilot Energy Technology Program (G-PET), will help the companies conduct real-world pilots of their products, a crucial step toward bringing their products successfully to market. The businesses receiving grants are: BuLogics, a building energy management systems firm, NovaThermal, a maker of innovative heat pumps, and Niche Waste, a manufacturer of sophisticated food waste management systems.

“Turning ideas into products, companies and jobs is one of the most important things we can do to harness the power of the growing clean tech economy,” said Mayor Nutter. “That’s what this is all about – helping Philadelphia businesses bring their concepts to life. Thoughtful investment strategies are why the region is increasingly seen as a center for the clean tech economy. It’s why the Department of Energy and other federal agencies are investing nearly $130 million to build the Greater Philadelphia Innovation Cluster for Energy Efficient Buildings (GPIC), and why cutting edge international firms like the Mark Group are basing their operations in Philadelphia.”

The goal of this innovation program, the only one of its kind in the United States, was to find companies whose products had sound technical footing and strong business plans but were still relatively untested. Demonstrating “real world” success by finding a “first user” can be a major barrier to the success of new projects. Therefore, G-PET helped companies find that “first user” by absorbing the cost and risk of adopting the product.

For several of the awards, the “first user” will actually be a public facility, meaning that the City will benefit not only indirectly, from the growth of the companies being supported, but directly, in the form of savings on energy costs on its own bills.

“We are truly thankful to be a recipient of the Greenworks Pilot Energy Technology Program grant, a wonderful initiative sponsored by the City of Philadelphia, PIDC, and Ben Franklin Technology Partners,” said Mirka Walczak, chief executive officer of BuLogics, Inc. “Our company mission is to help others save energy through our inventions, while maintaining a socially and environmentally responsible attitude in all that we do. And the G-Pet grant allows us to do just that.” ”

“We may never have been able to pave the way for such exciting energy conservation projects without the G-PET grant. Evolve Guest Controls, and its Philadelphia-based technology affiliate BuLogics, will bring innovation and energy savings to the Inn at Penn that we feel will make a significant impact on our use of energy resources. We look forward to our installation of this state-of-the-art guest room energy management system, “Greg Stafford, General Manager, Inn at Penn.

Awards from the program are as follows:

Awardee Amount of Award Project
BuLogics $175,000 New energy control systems at the Navy Yard and the Inn at Penn
Nova Thermal $150,000 New heat pump for building heat and energy extraction from effluent stream at Philadelphia Water Department Facility
Niche Waste $18,500 Composting dumpster for bio-waste at Navy Yard

G-PET was developed by the City of Philadelphia and implemented in partnership with the Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation (PIDC) and the Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern Pennsylvania. Applicants applied online over the summer, and their applications were reviewed by a panel of independent scientists and investors to select those that have the best chance of moving successfully into the market, creating jobs, and advancing the region as a center for the clean tech economy.

“G-PET is unique. Its goal is to fund pilot testing of new energy-related products being developed by innovative, regional enterprises. That work will help accelerate the introduction of new products into the marketplace,” said RoseAnn B. Rosenthal, President & CEO of Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Southeastern PA.

Given the success of the first round of G-PET, a second round of funding is being made available immediately. Applicants can apply online at