Adelaide City Council officially opened the first electric car charging station in the CBD’s Grote Street UPark. Adelaide Lord Mayor Michael Harbison said that if the infrastructure were in place, demand for electric cars would grow.
“With these new charging points, we’re encouraging residents and City commuters to take a fresh look at their travel options, and show how solar power can have a real and practical application in the City. If there are more places to charge electric cars, more people will buy them, and buy into a greener form of transport”.
Initially, electric car owners will pay normal car parking charges, with the electricity provided without charge, explained the Lord Mayor.
Whilst this is a good solution in the short-term, and will incentivise the sales of electric cars in Adelaide, it’s not necessarily a sustainable method. PCI recently came across an automated solution that offers a formal charging infrastructure, allowing parking operators to build, scale and manage a network of vehicle-charging systems.
Currently being used in the US by government-industry funded partnership ‘Clean Cities’, the technology is called ‘SemaCharge’, and offers a range of both pedestal-mounted and wall-mounted charging stations that enable electric cars and plug-in hybrids to connect effortlessly to a power source.
Smart card authentication gives only authorised users access to charging, while wireless connectivity transmits transaction information to a remote server.
It is administered by a web-based system that allows infrastructure operators such as municipalities, utilities, commercial parking lot operators and apartment building managers to monitor and manage their network of charging stations, including metering, billing and demand response. The SemaCharge network also gives consumers the ability to track their usage and pay online.