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More electric vehicle charging stations coming to St. Albert

Council will make further decisions on where the chargers will go later in August.
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St. Albert has scored $200,000 in funding for 10 electric vehicle chargers that will be spread out across the city. KEVIN MA/St. Albert Gazette

St. Albert will have 10 new electric vehicle chargers thanks to new grant funding the city received last month from the Municipal Climate Change Action Centre.

The city anticipates it will have the chargers installed by the end of 2023. Some 10 new chargers will be able to fuel 20 vehicles at a time, and will be placed around the city for residents to use, although where exactly they will be placed is still up for debate.

“It's a massive upgrade to our electric car charging infrastructure,” said St. Albert Coun. Mike Killick.

The city has proposed placing four chargers at Servus Place, two at the Jerome Iginla Arena, and four at the Nakî Transit Centre & Park and Ride, although Killick wants to see them distributed a bit differently around the city.

Killick would like to see two of the chargers that would be going to the transit centre moved to the St. Albert Place parking lot to support the downtown business community.

Anyone attending a show at the Arden Theatre, grabbing dinner downtown, getting their hair cut, or doing some shopping could charge their vehicles while they visited the area, Killick said.

“We could try and keep them in a location that they would be accessible during the farmers market ... so it could be a really good location for them,” Killick said.

But there could be challenges moving the chargers to the St. Albert Place parking lot, and the shift may require changes to the electric system in the area to accommodate the electric needs of the chargers, Killick said.

During a council meeting in early July, Killick proposed council discuss bringing the chargers downtown, although council decided to wait until August to make the decision so they can get more background information from administration.

Servus Place will be a good location for the chargers, Killick said, as it is close to the Anthony Henday so drivers can easily stop in. Anyone using Servus Place for a tournament or game can use the chargers while they are inside for a few hours.

The grant gives the city $200,000 to install the chargers, although there will need to be extra money kicked over by the municipality to help fully fund the projects. Right now, council doesn’t know how much the extra costs will be.

The city will be getting level two chargers, which means the vehicle can be charged in a few hours.

Currently, there are only two chargers in St. Albert for the public to use, with one in front of the new Fire Hall #1 and the other near the Economic Development building. These new chargers will really scale up the infrastructure for charging in the city, Killick said.

The grant was from the Municipal Climate Change Action Centre, a collaborative initiative between Alberta Municipalities, Rural Municipalities of Alberta, and the Government of Alberta. St. Albert was awarded the highest amount of money available.

In February, a provincial and federal funding agreement aimed to double the public electric-charging infrastructure in Alberta by 2023.

The federal funding came out of the Natural Resources Canada’s Zero-Emission Vehicle Infrastructure Program (ZEVIP) and will join with funding from the existing Electric Vehicle Charging rebate program, which was set up by the Municipal Climate Change Action Centre.

The province currently has 255 electric vehicle chargers across Alberta, including both private and public chargers, and the new money will help double the publicly-funded chargers.  

The federal government has said at least 20 per cent of new passenger vehicles sold in Canada must be zero-emission by 2026, and that will increase to at least 60 per cent by 2030, and to 100 per cent by 2035.

Jennifer Henderson, Local Journalism Initiative reporter

About the Author: Jennifer Henderson, Local Journalism Initiative reporter

Jennifer Henderson is the Local Journalism Initiative reporter for Great West Media based in St. Albert, Alta.
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