Uploaded on Dec 15, 2011
Hillsborough County celebrates the installation of the County's first electric car charging station, located at the Bloomingdale Regional Public Library, 1906 Bloomingdale Ave. in Valrico. The ribbon cutting ceremony took place on Monday, Dec. 12. This electric car charging station is the first of several to be installed at County facilities over the coming months.
This effort, led by Commissioner Mark Sharpe, District 7 Countywide, serves to develop infrastructure for increased electric vehicle use by consumers seeking cleaner and cheaper energy alternatives. Commissioner Sharpe stated, "This effort supports both business and consumer needs, while moving us toward energy independence." Various local car dealerships are already bringing electric vehicles to their show room floors, and even more have plans to bring electric vehicles into stock.
In June, the County Commission approved participation in a two-year Department of Energy grant opportunity to install ChargePoint electric car charging stations, which are provided to the County free of charge. The County will cover the cost of installation and electric usage at the charging stations.
The County plans to install additional electric car charging stations at:
Two at the County Center Public Parking Garage (aka Pierce Street Garage) at 319 N. Pierce St. in Tampa
Environmental Protection Commission of Hillsborough County, 3629 Queen Palm Drive in Tampa
Jimmie B. Keel Regional Library, 2902 W. Bearss Ave. in Tampa
Jan Kaminis Platt Regional Library, 3910 S. Manhattan Ave. in Tampa
Plant CityCourthouse, 301 North Michigan Ave. in Plant City
Each charging station will be connected to an online network that allows drivers to use their computer or smartphone to locate stations nationwide, see which are in use, and the service fee for use. There will be no cost to electric vehicle drivers to get a charge at Hillsborough County's electric car charging stations during the two-year grant period; they will only be required to pay the existing parking rate (if applicable) at the given locations. Each station will be able to charge electric vehicles from all major car makers.
At the end of the grant period, Commissioners can decide if they will keep the existing units and pay for their maintenance and upkeep, and for connection to the nationwide charging station network.
The grant program is part of Coulomb Technologies' expansion of its $37 million ChargePoint America initiative to more U.S. cities. As a result, electric car charging stations are being installed throughout Florida and the Tampa Bay area, including at the St. Pete Times Forum, Hillsborough Community College, and various locations sponsored by the City of Tampa. The ChargePoint America program is part of a $15 million grant administered by the Department of Energy and funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act through the Transportation Electrification Initiative.
To learn about Hillsborough County's energy efficiency and alternative fuel efforts, visit http://www.hillsboroughcounty.org/green/
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