The Blue Mountains council has endorsed a plan to install electric vehicle (EV) charging stations at seven locations around town.
Town staff presented a report at council’s committee of the whole meeting on May 31 outlining a number of EV charging station options. Council chose to endorse the option that would see the charging stations installed at seven locations around town: Arthur Street parking lot, town hall, Thornbury Post Office parking lot, the Hester St. parking lot, L.E. Shore Library, Craigleith Museum and the Beaver Valley Community Centre.
The plan would see two dual plug charging stations installed at the first six locations and a single dual plug station installed at the community centre.
Manager of Sustainability and Solid Waste Jeffery Fletcher presented the option to council and advised the cost to the town would be minimal. The town will work with EPCOR on the community centre installation, as EPCOR has received federal funding to assist with the project.
Fletcher advised council that initially the capital outlay for the other six locations would be $115,000 for the town. However, staff have secured a grant of $100,000 for the project. Grant details aren’t available at this time.
“It has turned out pretty well in terms of being able to fund this project,” said Fletcher.
The staff report estimated that the town would realize $52,700 in annual revenue from the charging stations if they are utilized 30 per cent of the time, with a $2 per hour charging fee.
“The payback is months, not years,” commented Coun. Rob Sampson, who asked if the charging stations were universal for all EVs.
Fletcher confirmed that the charging stations would have adapters to allow all EV models to use them to charge.
Coun. Bill Abbotts asked if e-bikes would be able to utilize the stations as well as EVs.
Fletcher said staff had not looked into that option, but could do some further research about what might be possible.
Coun. Jim Uram asked if there was any risk of the charging stations putting strain on the electricity system infrastructure in town.
Fletcher said that would not be an issue.
“There shouldn’t be a limitation on the system,” he said.