Small city outside Vancouver considering fees at public EV charging spots

The small City of Powell River on the Sunshine Coast will soon be implementing a user fee of $2 per hour for anyone who uses the city-owned electric vehicle (EV) charging stations.

According to city sustainability planner Ana Lukyanova (via PR Peak), the city first installed public EV chargers in 2016 at the local boat harbour and city hall. Later in 2018, more EV chargers were installed in the public library and recreation complex.

Since then, popularity of EV’s in the area has grown exponentially, and with it the use of the free public chargers. And many of those people are leaving their cars plugged in for longer than they need to charge, leaving those in need of a ‘fill-up’ with limited access. Based on research by the city, vehicles were plugged in without charging about 30 per cent of the time in 2019.

To address the concerns, city council have voted in favour of preparing a fee bylaw amendment which would see a fee of $2 per hour established. There would be no 2-tier fee structure like Richmond BC, where after 2 hours, the fee increases to $5 per hour. According to Lukyanova, that could happen in the future.

Featured image via: Paul Galinski – PR Peak

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