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Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Two new electric vehicle parking spots at City Hall energize EV owners

Two new electric vehicle parking spots at City Hall energize EV owners

About one million electric vehicles are on the road in the United States with a little over 1,000 sold every month, according to InsideEVs.com. Now there are two more parking spots for these cars to “refuel” with the opening of an EV charging station in the City Hall parking lot.

“There were 16 public charging stations in the city: eight in Downtown Westminster and eight at the Westminster Station parking garage,” said Sustainability Coordinator Paul Schmiechen. “With the opening of this charging station at City Hall, we hope to keep pace with the growing demand as more EVs are on the road.”

The new Chargepoint EV charging station has two ports to charge two vehicles at a time. The station is available for city employees and members of the public to plug in. The station is a level two style charger, so an EV can charge from empty to full in approximately four to five hours. The charging station indicates the amount of electricity used, the charging time and when the vehicle is fully charged.

Users plug the cable into their vehicle and can monitor the charging status via Chargepoint’s app. When a driver pulls up to the station, they unlock the charging cable via the app and, once plugged in, can see how many additional miles have been added and when the car’s battery is full.

“We want to keep the station open and accessible, so we encourage EV owners to rotate their cars out when they’re done charging,” said Schmiechen.

An opening ceremony on Tuesday, Nov. 20 for the charging station, was attended by Mayor Herb Atchison and National Car Charging CEO Jim Burness, who tested the station by charging his Model X Tesla.

This station, and the others in the city, is partially funded by a grant from the Regional Air Quality Council.

At the Public Safety Center, the Westminster Police Department has two charging stations with three charging ports for three Chevrolet Volt fleet vehicles. However, these charging stations are for the PD’s use only and isn’t open to the public.

“Part of the city’s vision is to be one of the most sustainable cities in America, and with this charging station at City Hall, we’re taking another step in that direction,” said Schmiechen.

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