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Three Tennessee cities selected for TVA Connected Communities pilot program


Three Tennessee cities were selected as part TVA’s initial round of six Connected Communities pilot projects, which are working to help achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. 

Each of the six projects located in the TVA region is eligible for up to $2 million TVA funding to help fuel a cleaner economy as well as provide STEM education, workforce development training, and increase community resiliency. Memphis, Nashville, and Ripley in Tennessee were selected for projects with Memphis proposing two projects that received funding. Projects were also funded in Kilpatrick, Ala., and Guntersville, Ala. 

The first project in Memphis will Expanding the technologies at the Wang Experiential Learning Center to equip local students with workforce education and skill development. The second project in Memphis will provide the community with equitable access to EV charging stations and developing a curriculum for students to learn job skills related to EV charging.  Approval in process, expected to be completed this summer. 

Nashville’s project will enhance parental access to, understanding of and involvement in their children’s academic journeys.  Ripley’s funding will build a resilient microgrid to lower energy costs for local city facilities and ensure reliable power during emergencies. 

“Connected Communities is a unique initiative that helps communities improve the quality of life for their residents, and we’re excited to see what impact the next round of pilot projects will have on the people we serve,” said Joe Hoagland, vice president of Innovation and Research at TVA. “So many of our programs rely on things like the internet or innovative technologies. By working with communities to bring partners together to deploy projects that focus on these topics, we’re ensuring our communities are better prepared for the future.” 

Hoagland expressed the importance of community participation in achieving a future low-emissions grid: A total of 27 applications were submitted and evaluated by a diverse group of stakeholders. Of the projects submitted, six projects were awarded grants for the next round of pilot projects. These projects will share over $2 million in grant funding from TVA in 2024 through 2026. 

Connected Communities is one of several TVA initiatives designed to help achieve net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. This initiative enables communities’ readiness for a future energy grid. Ensuring communities have access to amenities such as broadband internet, healthy environments, job opportunities and resiliency plans is important as the electric utility industry continues to grow and transition. 

To learn more about TVA’s Connected Communities initiative, including resources and tools for communities to implement their own Connected Communities initiatives, please visit email your inquiry to