City to install new electric vehicle charging station on Peace Portal Drive

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The city of Blaine will soon be installing a new electric vehicle charging station on Peace Portal Drive in downtown Blaine.

The new charging station, which will be equipped with two fast-chargers allowing two electric vehicles to charge at the same time, will replace an old charging station that utilized outdated technology and became inoperable in late 2018. The old charging station was recently removed and will soon be surplused and disposed of by the city, said Blaine public works director Ravyn Whitewolf.

The new, two-head charging station will be located in roughly the same spot, on the angled parking side of the street across from Hill’s Chevron. The city of Blaine will be leasing the new charging station from ChargePoint, a California-based company that operates an international network of electric vehicle charging stations.

“They are one of the most prominent electric vehicle charger folks in the country, with a huge network and online access and all kinds of things that will make it easier for the public to use, because it’ll be part of a network,” said Whitewolf. “They come highly recommended. We’re looking forward to their customer service and being able to have our community within their international network.”

Whitewolf said that during the three-year lease, ChargePoint will maintain the charging station and collect and remit the user fees on Blaine’s behalf. The cost to the city will be $2,400 per year, and additionally, ChargePoint will keep 10 percent of the user fees.

The city of Blaine is currently working on determining the rate that electric vehicle owners will be charged for using the machine. “The city is not expecting to mark this up as a revenue-generating installation,” said Whitewolf. “Our intent is to work with ChargePoint to just make sure that we cover our own costs.”

The new charging station, a CT4000 Level 2 model, was shipped to Blaine last month. The city then hired an electrician to make the site ready for installation. As soon as the electrical work is done, the city will notify ChargePoint, whose staff will come to Blaine to install the machine. Whitewolf said that this will hopefully happen in the next month or so.

“We’re really happy that city council supported the lease and that we can provide this alternative to our citizens in Blaine,” said Whitewolf.

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