Langley Township is taking its place on an electric highway that will stretch from Southern California to Vancouver, with the announcement of six car chargers coming this spring.
The Langley Events Centre will be the host site for a DC Fast Charger, one of more than a dozen to be installed around the province this spring. Up to 30 could be installed in various towns around the province by 2015.
The fast charger can top up the battery on an all-electric car in about 10 minutes, or do a complete recharge in 30 minutes.
That same recharge takes about seven hours for a Nissan Leaf, one of the few commonly available electric cars, if using a home recharger.
"It is a highly visible and convenient location and an ideal place for a fast charging station," Township Mayor Jack Froese said in a statement.
The cost of the station and its installation and maintenance will be borne by the province.
The only cost to the Township will be the electricity, and making some space at the Langley Events Centre for the actual installation.
Power will be sold at cost to customers who use the fast charger, said community energy manager Ryan Schmidt.
He said he hopes that with more fast charging stations like this popping up around the province, more people will consider investing in an electric car.
Another of the fast charging stations will be at the Surrey Museum in nearby Cloverdale.
Along with those, there will be six level two chargers set up at other Township facilities.
Two, in the Township's Murrayville works yard and in its underground parking lot at the civic hall, will be for employees. The other four - at Township hall, the W.C. Blair Recreation Centre, the Langley Events Centre, and the Walnut Grove Community Centre - will be for members of the public, and will give away their power for free.
As level two chargers, they will take longer to top up a vehicle's batteries. It takes 90 minutes for a top-up, said Schmidt.
Given the limited number of people who will be using them, the Township expects the amount of power going out through the chargers will be between $350 and $500 per unit, per year.
The cost of installing the level two chargers will be about $60,000, with $24,000 covered by a provincial grant.
That's far less than the cost of the $100,000 to $130,000 estimate for the fast charger, where costs and maintenance will be entirely provincial.
The Township doesn't yet have any electric cars in its own fleet, for budget reasons.
"The cost of the technology isn't quite where we'd like it to be," said Schmidt.
There have been ongoing attempts to green and streamline the fleet, using smaller or hybrid cars instead of larger, heavier vehicles where possible, he said. But with two chargers installed in Township facilities for fleet use, if the cost comes down for battery-powered cars, they'll likely be adopted eventually.
All of the chargers are to be installed and working by the end of March.
@ Copyright 2013