Electrical Business

Business News
B.C. devotes $1.3M to electric vehicle DC fast chargers


January 30, 2013
By Alyssa Dalton

January 30, 2013 – British Columbia has announced a $1.3-million investment in direct current (DC) fast-charging infrastructure in 13 communities throughout the province to help electric vehicle (EV) owners plug in and get charged. Environment minister Terry Lake made this announcement in unveiling the future location of Vancouver’s first DC fast-charging station at Telus World of Science.

“It’s extremely encouraging to see such widespread interest among communities across the province in hosting and operating electric vehicle charging stations, including DC fast chargers,” said Lake. “Providing electric vehicle owners with more options to charge their vehicles will make electric vehicles an even more attractive option.”

DC fast chargers require about 20 to 30 minutes for 80% charge and are necessary to give EV owners the confidence to travel between communities, said the province. On the other hand, Level 2 charging stations 240V require four to eight hours to reach full charge, which is usually adequate for commuters, but can hamper electric vehicle mobility between communities, especially for pure battery electric vehicle owners, it added.

“More efficient charging stations make driving vehicles that use clean B.C. electricity a much easier choice,” said Rich Coleman, minister of energy, mines and natural gas. “B.C. families in communities throughout the province can now charge their electric vehicles more quickly and reduce their transportation energy costs.”

“BC Hydro is a proud supporter of British Columbia’s efforts to expand electric vehicle charging points across the province,” added Kip Morison, chief technology officer with BC Hydro. “The deployment of this infrastructure represents an important step in transitioning from single demonstration projects to a more comprehensive and accessible charging network.”

The following locations have been identified for deploying DC fast chargers*:
• Whistler – Conference Centre (4010 Whistler Way)
• Squamish – Stan Clarke Park (2nd Ave., across from Municipal Hall)
• Surrey – Surrey Museum (17710 – 56 Ave.)
• Township of Langley – Langley Events Centre (7888 – 200 St.)
• Saanich – Uptown Shopping Centre
• Merritt – Merritt Tourism/Visitor Info Booth (2202 Voght St.)
• Hope – Hope Visitor Centre (919 Water Ave., at the intersection of Highway 1 and Highway 5)
• Cowichan Valley Regional District (Duncan) – Island Savings Centre (2687 James St.)
• Nanaimo – Bastion Square (94 Front St.) or Vancouver Island Conference Centre (Gordon St.)
• City of North Vancouver – Lower Lonsdale
• District of North Vancouver – District of North Vancouver Operations Centre (Crown St.)
• Vancouver – Telus World of Science (1455 Quebec St.)

*The province noted the exact site location within a community could change, should the outcome of the engineering/electrical assessments currently underway warrant an alternate location.

One more location will be formalized over the coming weeks targeting installation by March 31, 2013, for a total of 13 stations.