Seattle Metropolis Gentle to put in electrical car chargers at curbside places throughout metropolis

A Level 2 electric vehicle charger installed on a utility pole. (Photo via Seattle City Light)

Seattle City Light announced a new service last month in which the utility plans to install electric vehicle chargers at select curbside locations throughout the city. The goal is to give EV drivers who may not have access to off-street parking the ability to charge their vehicles.

City Light will install, own, operate and maintain the Level 2 EV chargers within city limits. The chargers will be available on a first-come, first-served basis and cannot be reserved. Each charger will provide a typical EV with over 30 miles of range per hour of charge time.

Drivers will pay a 20 cents per-kilowatt-hour (kWh) fee to use the chargers. The fees are designed to pay for the electricity, operations, maintenance and repair costs while offsetting the initial purchase and installation costs, which Smart Cities Dive reported to be an estimated $11,000 to $25,000.

City Light says the service is needed because many older single-family homes, apartments, condominiums, and houseboats frequently do not have off-street parking like a driveway, garage, or parking lot. This can make it difficult or impossible for residents to provide their own EV charging when parking on the street.

Locations for the chargers will be selected based on resident requests and whether those locations meet program requirements. Criteria include:

  • Single-family homes, including properties with detached single houses, duplexes, triplexes, fourplexes, townhomes, and accessory dwelling units. These requests must be for properties that do not have off-street parking (like driveways or garages).
  • Any multi-family housing property with five or more units, including apartments, condominiums, houseboats, or mobile home parks.

An online charger request form is here.

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