by Luke deNatale
The city of Portland has installed an electric vehicle (EV) charging station. The unit has been installed in the Elm Street garage.
Customers do not pay for the electricity used when their car is being charged but are only charged $1.75 per hour to park, which is the standard parking rate.
The charging station is capable of recharging an EV battery that is entirely depleted in 4-5 hours, depending on the size of the battery and the make or model of the vehicle.
Electricity costs for the charging station are relatively inexpensive. It costs 13 cents per kilowatt-hour to charge vehicles. The station has had over 237 kilowatt hours logged since October, according to John Peverada, Parking Manager of Portland.
There are an estimated 700 electric vehicles in the state of Maine, with a majority concentrated in the southern Maine region. Up to 40% of that estimated amount within Portland and the surrounding southern Maine areas.
Due to increasing demand and the number of electric vehicles, Mr. Peverada explained that there have been ongoing discussions regarding installing EV charging stations at the Spring Street and Temple Street parking garages, although no specific installation date was given. The charging stations themselves cost approximately $2470 to install.