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Posted at 1:25 PM ET, 11/16/2010

Electric car charging station unveiled

By Luke Rosiak

The District this morning unveiled its first public, curbside electric car charging station, located at the Franklin D. Reeves Center on 14th St. NW, with two spaces for charging vehicles. Mayor Adrian Fenty was joined by Department of Energy Undersecretary Cathy Zoi and District Department of Transportation Director Gabe Klein for the opening.

The station is the result of a $15 million Department of Energy grant which in the next year will provide 4,600 charging stations in Austin, southern Michigan, Los Angeles, New York, Orlando, Sacramento, the Bay Area, Washington state and the District.

"This charger represents a new direction for fuel efficient vehicles throughout the region," said DDOT Director Klein in a statement. "We continue to ask people to reduce their carbon footprint and make greener choices and so we are striving to provide the infrastructure and technology to support those goals."

The objective of the ChargePoint America program is "to accelerate the development and production of electric vehicles to substantially reduce petroleum consumption, reduce greenhouse gas production, and create jobs."

The installation of the ChargePoint station was done by PEPCO and NovaCharge, LLC.

By Luke Rosiak  | November 16, 2010; 1:25 PM ET
Categories:  District, Driving, Transportation Politics  
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Klein is about as anti-car as you can get. I don't even think he is enthused about electric cars. He wants everyone on bikes or walking. He may soon unpave the roads build stables all over the city and insist everyone ride horses. DDOT's Horse Share Program.

Posted by: concernedaboutdc | November 16, 2010 2:01 PM | Report abuse

How long does it take to charge an electric car?

Posted by: getjiggly1 | November 16, 2010 2:43 PM | Report abuse

If you charge your car at that location by the time you return the only thing left on the car will be the battery

Posted by: nativedc | November 16, 2010 2:54 PM | Report abuse

nativedc, glad I'm not the only one that noticed this irony. About the second or third stupid place in the city to choose for a first recharging station. Sure, perhaps somewhere in the top 25, but sure as heck not the FIRST place to put one.

Let's hope the Fenty administration did a better job of picking locations 2 through 10.

Posted by: roob7370-proctor | November 16, 2010 7:55 PM | Report abuse

To fully charge should be 4-6 hours assuming it's 220 volt station which I'm sure it is. In reality I think the intent is to just top off what you used to get to work. However, in practice, I could see someone parking there all day. It's too much of a hassle to find parking twice during the work day.

ALSO, I'd like to know how much it costs to charge please? In other words, what is the charge to charge? Surely they aren't providing free fuel (at least not for the long haul)?

BTW - I think a better *first* location would have been the L'Enfant Promenade near the Dept of Energy, USPS, USDA, Smithsonian, etc. That just seems like a no-brainer.

Posted by: roob7370-proctor | November 16, 2010 7:59 PM | Report abuse

Time to charge a Nissan LEAF is predicted to be 6+ hours on a 220-volt (dryer circuit) outlet. But they are probably installing the high-voltage, fast-charge stations, which charge at 440-volts (or 480?), and take just 20 minutes to bring an empty battery in a LEAF up to 80%. Possible problem: charging at that high rate is expected to shorten the life of the (expensive) batteries, so it's not something you'd want to do regularly.

Posted by: SamBuddy | November 16, 2010 8:31 PM | Report abuse

Ha ha hee hee, concernedaboutdc finally made a good funny, Horsesharing sounds fun, and about your speed. I think DDOT is located at this spot so that they can monitor the 1st station braniacs.

Posted by: concernedaboutdc2 | November 16, 2010 10:04 PM | Report abuse

How dare Klein and the Mayor support Obama and his goals. It's downright unamerican!

Posted by: concernedaboutdc2 | November 16, 2010 10:12 PM | Report abuse

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