Castlegar has a new electric car charger downtown.

Castlegar charging into the future

City installs electric car charger downtown in the Castlegar Library Parking lot.

A new electric car charging station is now up and running in downtown Castlegar. The Level 2 – 240 volt charger is located in the south west corner of the Castlegar Library’s parking lot. The charger is free to use and can give a vehicle a full charge in about four hours.

“It’s great to see this happening,” said Castlegar’s CAO John Malcolm. “It is something the city has worked for, for a number of years. It’s a good step moving forward into the future for lowering our carbon footprint.”

The new charger is expected to primarily draw tourists and travellers, a fact that influenced the decision to place the unit downtown. Users will be able to do a bit of shopping and dining as well as take in Sculpturewalk and some fresh air at Millennium Park while their vehicles charge.

“Any time someone is using the charger that isn’t a resident, they will be bringing money and generating business for the community,” said Castlegar director of civic works Chris Barlow, “So it is definitely a good pay off.” The new charger is already listed on plugshare, one of the primary sources for charging station locations.

Recent statistics suggest that there are about 3000 electric cars on the road in BC with the number expected to increase as more and more public charging stations become available and electric cars become more affordable.

“It’s historic in a sense — like 120 years ago when we were transitioning from the horse and buggy to the gas car; except now we’re transitioning from the internal combustion to the electric,” said Malcom. “I’m sure the first gas stations that went up were greeted with some skepticism similar to what some are suggesting about the electrical.”

The city hopes to expand the network of chargers in Castlegar in the future — possibly at the Chamber of Commerce and Millennium Park. “We are looking at a number of opportunities to increase the number of chargers in town,” said Chris Barlow, director of civic works for Castlegar. “We are looking at some funding partners right now, but it is too early to say right now how it will work out.”

Castlegar is being supported in that goal by the Community Energy Association (CEA), an organization that is working on behalf of the regional districts of East Kootenay, Kootenay Boundary and Central Kootenay as well as their member municipalities in developing a regional collaborative strategy.

“We are really pleased and delighted with the regional collaboration aspect,” said CEA community relations manager Patricia Dehnel. As part of their Fueling the Kootenays strategy CEA is hoping to build a robust electric vehicle network.

Castlegar has had a public charging station since 2011 when Kootenay Savings Credit Union (KSCU) included one as part of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certified building they built on 20th St. That charger is a Level 1 – 120 volt and has two reserved parking spots on the west side of the building.

The KSCU charger primarily services a more local clientele with people that travel between Trail and Nelson for work and locals out running errands or participating in activities being frequent users.

Just Posted

City of Castlegar treating weeds the next few weeks

City will be using organic product on sidewalks, traffic islands and parking lots.

17th Street closed intermittently today

Castlegar street will be closed for line painting

Summer reading fun at Castlegar library

Registration for second session in July 19.

Last stop: The inside story of Queen City Shuttle and Charters’ closure

Former employees open up about the Nelson company’s final days

Craft cannabis development planned for Castlegar

Plans are underway for one of the first craft cannabis industrial parks in the province.

Feds lowered poverty line, reducing the number of seniors in need: documents

Liberals introduced a poverty line that was below the prior low-income cutoff

BCHL: Alberni Valley Bulldogs have been sold

Victoria company has purchased BCHL team, but will keep it in Port Alberni

Justin Trudeau’s carbon footprint revealed in ranking of world leaders

Travel company ranks 15 world leaders’ foreign flight CO2 emissions

“Does Kirby care?” B.C. First Nation’s group using geo-targeted ads in Houston, Texas for justice

The Heiltsuk Tribal Council has called out Kirby Corporation for the Nathan E. Stewart oil spill

Trudeau announces $79M investment for 118 more public transit buses across B.C.

Contributions from municipal to federal level to fund more buses in a bid to cut commutes

B.C. woman wins record $2.1 million on casino slot machine

‘That night was so surreal … I wasn’t able to sleep or eat for the first two days,’ she said

West Kootenay U16 Rebels take home provincial gold

West Kootenay Rebels fastball team battle hard to win the BC U16C Fastball Championship

After B.C. dad’s death, Technical Safety BC wants changes to trampoline park rules

Jay Greenwood, 46, did ‘a series of acrobatic manoeuvres prior to a fall that caused serious injury and cardiac arrest’

$900M settlement reached in class action on sexual misconduct in Canadian military

After facing criticism, the government moved to begin settlement proceedings in early 2018

Most Read