Chamber of Jefferson County to host electric vehicle chargers

Annoucement made as expo nears

PORT TOWNSEND — The Chamber of Jefferson County will host electric vehicle chargers, eventually offering charging for 10 vehicles, now that two grants have been awarded.

The chamber announced the grants on the eve of its inaugural EV Expo set from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at the chamber office, 2409 Jefferson St., Port Townsend.

“Many organizations were involved with this,” said Arlene Alen, chamber executive director, about the two grants.

The grants were acquired through collaboration by the chamber, the Climate Action Committee (CAC) and the City of Port Townsend EV Workgroup and their collaboration with FORTH Inc., EV Charging Solutions, Cyan Strategies, Jefferson Healthcare, Jefferson Public Utility District and ZEV Co-op.

The state Department of Transportation Zero-emissions Access Program (ZAP) grant, will fund a high-speed charger that, hopefully, will be in place by the chamber’s readerboard by the end of the year, Alen said.

It will be one charger with two heads. One will have a ride-share car.

“If you need to drive a car and don’t have one, you could borrow that vehicle and drive around,” Alen said. “You could pick up a car and leave a bike” for a low, hourly fee.

The car would be useful both for residents who depend solely upon bicycles or buses as well as visitors who arrive without cars, she said.

Right now, the chamber is awaiting a site survey.

A second EV carshare vehicle and charging station in Port Townsend is set for Jefferson Healthcare hospital through this grant, Alen said.

The ZAP grant is designed to put into effect a carshare pilot program in underserved and low- to moderate-income communities that have limited access to public transportation with clean fuel transport options, according to a press release.

“ZEV co-op (Zero Emission Vehicle Cooperative) is the driving force behind this grant which will serve our community,” Alen said.

“ZEV co-op provides the electric vehicle, insurance, reservation system, maintenance and kilowatts to get you on your way and one of their EVs.”

Another grant that will benefit Port Townsend is the ZEVIP (Zero Emission Vehicle Infrastructure Partnership) Award through FORTH, Inc, a software company, that was awarded by the state Department of Transportation’s Office of Innovative Partnerships.

The $3,950,000 grant is for the West Sound Ferry Cluster.

This grant allows their partners to install and upgrade direct current fast chargers (DCFC) at six sites along priority corridors in the state.

The West Sound Ferry Cluster includes installations in Port Townsend — at the chamber office — as well as Poulsbo, Bainbridge Island, Kingston, Port Orchard and Vashon Island.

Representatives from organizations responsible for both these opportunities will be participating in the EV Expo, Alen said.

The free public event will offer a dozen to perhaps as many as two dozen vehicles ranging from electric cars to electric trucks, e-bikes and trikes, an RV and camper, a tractor and a taxi.

The chamber also hopes to get a boat for the show.

Also offered will be sushi, tacos and an ice cream truck along with door prizes and breakout sessions with EV owners.

Four panels of experts are planned. One will be the EV owners. Another will deal with financing. A third will be devoted to “charging myths and miracles.” And a fourth panel will address the carbon footprint and sustainability.

For additional information, contact admin@jeffcountychamber.org or 360.385.7869.

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Executive Editor Leah Leach can be reached at 360-417-3530 or at lleach@peninsuladailynews.com.

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