ECOtality, Inc., a provider of clean electric transportation and storage technologies in the US and abroad, recently celebrated its Blink® Pedestal charging station installation in San Diego in the metropolitan area. Local stakeholders, elected officials, EV drivers, and company representatives came together outside the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center in Balboa Park, one of the five in the series of events that will be celebrating the installations of the commercial and publicly available charging stations in the EV Project markets. Balboa Park, which is located in the heart of San Diego, currently houses 10 Blink Pedestal chargers.
“San Diego has been a terrific project market for ECOtality, and its high levels of consumer and stakeholder interest make it an excellent proving ground for electric vehicles,” said Jonathan Read, CEO of ECOtality. “The Blink charging stations installed at the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center and at the San Diego Air & Space Museum—as well as the commercial Blink charging stations appearing in EV Project markets nationwide—underscores our commitment to smart EV deployment and placing charging stations at locations that fit the lifestyle of EV drivers.”
“A well-planned charging network tears down a significant barrier to adopting electric vehicles,” Mayor Jerry Sanders said. “I’m proud San Diego will be one of the first cities in the nation to encourage residents to purchase EVs, and that we’ll serve as a model for other cities as they look to deploy their charging infrastructures.”
ECOtality initiated the installations of its Blink Level 2 Residential charging stations in EV Project areas across the nation in December of 2010, and has since then completed more than 1,400 installations. In the last few months, ECOtality has been very actively installing Blink Pedestal chargers in commercial and public sites. The company strives to have approximately 1,000 Level 2 commercial and public charging stations installed in the metropolitan areas of San Diego by the end of the year, along with 30 Blink DC Fast Chargers that are available publicly.
At Balboa Park, ECOtality has installed three Blink Pedestal chargers in the parking lot located outside of the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center and seven charging stations located outside of the San Diego Air & Space Museum adjacent to the San Diego Municipal Gym.
“The installation of electric vehicle charging stations outside of the Fleet presents an exciting opportunity to highlight the importance of environmental stewardship to our visitors,” said Dr. Jeffrey Kirsch, Executive Director of the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center. “In conjunction with two current exhibitions focused on sustainability, ‘So WATT: An Illuminating Look at Energy,’ and ‘San Diego’s Water: From Source to Tap,’ we hope to add an exhibit component within the science center where visitors will be able to learn more about electric vehicles and make real-life connections to the outside charging stations.”
The event marks the culmination of almost a year and a half of planning. Locations of the public charging stations were selected utilizing ECOtality’s Micro-Climate™ planning process, which uses the input from regional partners and takes into account a variety of factors, which include traffic patterns and the locations of regional attractions, employment centers, retail hubs, as well as input from regional partners.
“This electric vehicle project signifies the State’s commitment to diversify how California uses cleaner vehicles and fuels to transport people and goods on our state’s roads and highways. Ten years from now we will look back and remember these early charger installations as the first steps in getting one million electric vehicles on the road,” stated California Energy Commission Vice Chair James Boyd.
“This is another example of how San Diego is leading the way when it comes to energy innovation,” said U.S. Rep. Susan Davis. “Electric vehicles provide a lower cost, cleaner alternative to transportation powered with expensive oil. Made possible by the economic stimulus bill, these federal investments in deploying public charging infrastructure—such as The EV Project—benefit all electric vehicle owners and manufacturers while enhancing our energy security and creating jobs for all Americans.”
ECOtality is currently discussing with private and public property owners for the installation of public charging stations, and has partnered with national retailer which include Sears, Macy’s, BP/Arco, Cracker Barrel and Best Buy, as well as leading commercial real estate company Jones Lang LaSalle. The company is also working with other EV Project stakeholders, which include SDG&E, to help choose site locations for charging stations and improve installation logistics.
“San Diego Gas & Electric looks forward to working with ECOtality, the City of San Diego, the California Energy Commission, SANDAG and other community leaders to make San Diego America’s Finest Plug In City,” said James P. Avery, SDG&E senior vice president, power supply.
The Blink Pedestal Chargers offer intelligent, user-friendly features that safely and intuitively charge EVs. They include a seven-inch interactive color touch screen and web-based delivery through the Blink Network.
“Vehicles like my all-electric Nissan Leaf, and the availability of charging stations across the county, will help move America away from its dependence on foreign oil, give San Diegans an exhaust-pipe free way to get around, and help to achieve the goals of our Regional Transportation Plan by reducing per capita greenhouse gas emissions,” said Encinitas Deputy Mayor Jerome Stocks, chair of the SANDAG Board of Directors.
For more information on ECOtality, Inc. and its future projects, visit their company website: www.ecotality.com
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