SALT LAKE CITY — Electric vehicles are becoming a more common sight throughout Salt Lake City.
A survey ranks the capital as the best city in America to own an EV. However, there are challenges to more people adopting EV cars.
North SLC resident Benjamin Jacobs says for more people to choose electric, we need more chargers.
He’s only been driving his Chevy Volt for a month, but it’s already saving him a ton of money. He says one of the biggest downsides to driving EV is range anxiety.
Making sure there are enough charging stations across Utah will help alleviate this common problem.
Rocky Mountain Power recently filed its Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Plan with the Utah Public Service Commission, which includes a $50 million investment in electric vehicle charging infrastructure for Utahns across the state.
James Campbell, the Director of Innovation and Sustainability for Rocky Mountain Power says surveys show the two biggest barriers to adopting EV are the cost of the vehicle and infrastructure.
Their goal is to provide fast chargers across the state so drivers feel confident they can get anywhere they need to go.
“What we’re seeing right now on the cost side is the EV prices are starting to come own, you’re seeing advances in the batteries, so the biggest barrier is going to be, do we have enough charging infrastructure to support all that,” said Rocky Mountain Power director of Innovation and Sustainability James Campbell.
Rocky Mountain Power plans to install 100 of these extreme fast chargers across 20-25 locations. Electricity is much cheaper than gas, at about 1 dollar equivalent per gallon.
“We’re going to deploy extreme fast chargers throughout the entire state,” said Rocky Mountain Power director of Innovation and Sustainability James Campbell. “Historically, we had chargers that would take about 40 minutes of charging to get 100 miles. Now, we’re installing chargers that are three to five times faster, which means you could get those 100 miles in about 10 minutes.”
Most of those new locations will be along the Wasatch front, with the rest in rural areas.
Over the past five years, Rocky Mountain Power has facilitated the installation of more than 70 DC fast chargers in Utah, completing an electric highway corridor along I-15. Additionally, more than 2,300 Level 2 chargers were installed as part of a workplace charging program.
Rocky Mountain Power plans to start construction on these new fast chargers next year, after they get approval from the public service commission.