Elec­tric ve­hi­cle charg­ers com­ing soon

Kapiti Observer - - FRONT PAGE - STAFF RE­PORTER

Kapiti will soon be home to five elec­tric ve­hi­cle charg­ers, be­ing added to phone boxes around the district in the next few months.

The charg­ers will be placed in Spark phone boxes at Waikanae Beach, Rau­mati Beach, Para­pa­raumu Beach, Paekakariki and the Waikanae Park and Ride.

The first in­stal­la­tion is likely to be at Tutere St in Waikanae Beach. All the charg­ers will be in the vicin­ity of the main shop­ping areas at each place.

The charg­ers will be free to use for the next 12 months, whether the driver is a Spark cus­tomer or not.

Spark will use a com­bi­na­tion of dif­fer­ent charg­ers in Kapiti.The power charg­ers will pro­vide an en­ergy top-up en­abling elec­tric ve­hi­cles to travel 20-40 kilo­me­tres from a 60-minute charge, depend­ing on the car.

Spark and Kapiti Coast District Coun­cil will each fund half the in­stal­la­tion costs.

Spark will cover op­er­a­tional costs for the ‘ SparkPlugs’ and coun­cil will main­tain the as­so­ci­ated carparks.

The new charg­ers will be sim­i­lar to those rolled out north and south of Auck­land last year.

Coun­cil strat­egy and plan­ning man­ager Sarah Steven­son said coun­cil was pleased to sup­port the public charg­ing in­fra­struc­ture de­vel­op­ment.

‘‘The ini­tia­tive will help re­duce car­bon emis­sions, make it eas­ier for EV own­ers to get around the Kapiti Coast and en­cour­age those who don’t own an EV to con­sider pur­chas­ing one in fu­ture.’’

Spark Ven­tures chief ex­ec­u­tive Ed Hyde said the Auck­land roll­out had been suc­cess­ful, and he was look­ing for­ward to tak­ing the ini­tia­tive fur­ther.

‘‘Elec­tric ve­hi­cles are the fu­ture of trans­port - they’re im­por­tant to build­ing a low­car­bon so­ci­ety and they’re in­creas­ingly af­ford­able ... what we don’t have yet is the widespread charg­ing in­fra­struc­ture to sup­port and re­as­sure EV driv­ers.

‘‘For decades, the phone box de­liv­ered value to New Zealan­ders ev­ery day - they were vir­tu­ally ev­ery­where you might need one be it a shop­ping mall, a street cor­ner or the last petrol sta­tion for miles.

‘‘As the Spark­Plug net­work grows and charg­ers are in­stalled in more and more of our phone boxes, this use­ful­ness will come back in a new and ex­cit­ing way.’’

Kapiti Coast District Coun­cil en­vi­ron­men­tal ad­viser Jake Roos with coun­cil’s Nis­san Leaf elec­tric ve­hi­cle.

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