In both Maryland and around the country, the infrastructure for electric cars in the form of electric charging stations has gotten a boost in the last week. Last weekend, Maryland committed a million dollars in stimulus money to putting 64+ charging stations at Baltimore parking garages, and sites along Interstate 95.
“Maryland will give $1 million in the form of grants to build at least 64 electric charging stations across the state, the Baltimore Sun reports. The Maryland Energy Administration administered the grants, which will be funded by federal stimulus money.”
“Marylanders average less than 40 miles driven daily, which places them within the battery-powered car range, said Woolf. Providing the “basic infrastructure” of available charging stations will help to sell electric vehicles and kindle new business and jobs.
Across the United States, more states and cities are adding charging stations to bolster electric car use. Coulomb Technologies recently revealed plans to build more than 4,600 charging stations in nine metro locations, including Washington, D.C. The ChargePoint America initiative will install 1,000 public charging locations by the end of 2010.”
Another firm called Ecotality is looking to deploy 15,000 electric chargers nationwide…
“Enter Ecotality, a Tempe, Ariz.-based electric-transportation company deploying 15,000 free electric-car chargers this fall in 13 cities, including the District. The initiative, called the EV Project, launched in October with $99.8 million in stimulus funds. The grant covered the installation of home charging stations — which cost about $2,200 each — for 4,700 buyers of the Leaf and a handful of public stations.
Ecotality was awarded another grant of $15 million a few weeks ago to add new locations, 1,000 more chargers for Leaf owners and 2,600 refueling units for Volt buyers. The rollout of the chargers will coincide with the fourth-quarter debut of Nissan and Chevy’s new models.”
We’ll need these investments and more to make electric cars mainstream in America, but it’s a promising start and shows that putting the infrastructure in place is realistic and affordable. People interested in buying the coming generation of electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles will be more comfortable in making that decision because of the added number of charging stations.