350Green has been working with utilities, automakers and municipalities throughout the United States on EV infrastructure since opening in 2008. This organization was an initial collaborator in the EV Project, which focuses on providing EV infrastructure to six western states and the District of Columbia. Projects in the 350Green portfolio include selection of EV charger locations and organizing funding for charger purchases. Representatives from 350Green announced last week that they want to develop a national EV infrastructure starting with the San Francisco Bay area.
This bold endeavor will start with a series of EV chargers in six Bay Area cities by the summer of 2012. 350Green announced that chargers are slated for shopping areas in Palo Alto, Milbrane, Menlo Park, Sunnyvale, San Francisco and Albany. These chargers are intended to serve plug-in hybrid and EV owners who frequent high-traffic locations. Selected retailers will not pay a dime for these chargers thanks to funding from the Bay Area Quality Management District. This funding is part of the district’s Spare the Air program to reduce greenhouse emissions.
350Green features two products that form the foundation for Bay Area infrastructure as well as the planned national network. The PowerDock is a single charging unit that can fit into small spaces and provide charges to four vehicles. The Express Plaza can be installed as a single unit or combine with other charging units to create a refueling station. These products are sold in 220-volt and 480-volt fast chargers to meet the needs of Bay Area clients. 350Green packages batteries with each unit intended to serve more than two vehicles as a hedge against excessive charges.
The Bay Area phase of 350Green’s national EV charging network should ease myriad concerns by early adopters. 350Green noted that plug-in hybrid and EV drivers should see their worries about vehicle range recede with the addition of new chargers. The typical EV would not be restricted to the Bay Area if 350Green can build infrastructure to Nevada, Oregon and other destinations. The combination of high-capacity chargers and batteries in each 350Green location would reduce concerns about grid overload. 350Green has also stated that solar panels would be used for passive collection at heavily used stations, thus easing stresses on an overtaxed electrical system.