WCSU to install electric vehicle charging stations
State grant to provide two free-to-use, public units on each campus
DANBURY, CONN. — Thanks to a grant from the Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection (DEEP), Western Connecticut State University will install four electric vehicle (EV) charging stations on the Midtown and Westside campuses in the coming months. The EV units, which can fully charge a vehicle in two hours, will be available not only to the campus community, but to the public as well — free of charge.
WCSU Director of Facilities, Operations and Environmental Health and Safety Programs Luigi Marcone applied for the EnergizeCT grant that will partially fund the installation of the units.
“I thought it would be a great opportunity to be a good civic community partner,” Marcone said. “On campus we are trying to focus on being green and we want to support those individuals who are doing the same by driving electric cars.”
The university will be designated as a participant in the EV Connecticut Electric Vehicle Charging Solutions program. Signs designed by the state Department of Transportation will alert motorists to the presence of the EV charging units — two in the White Street Garage on the Midtown campus and two in the Centennial Hall Garage on the Westside campus. Western also will be noted as a free EV charging provider on state Web portals and other websites, such as the U.S. Department of Energy and motor clubs.
A press release distributed by Gov. Dannel Malloy’s office on Nov. 4 explained the rationale behind the EV charging station grants.
“Our goal is a network of charging stations that allows anyone driving an electric vehicle to travel anywhere in our state with total confidence that they will be able to recharge their car battery when necessary,” said Malloy. “The grants we are announcing today will bring us one step closer to that goal by adding to the nearly 100 charging stations that are already available and putting more of them at restaurants, businesses, colleges, medical centers, municipal parking facilities and other convenient locations for the public.
“These grants will help fulfill my vision of a cheaper, cleaner and more reliable energy future for the families and businesses of our state,” Malloy said. “A recent federal Department of Energy study shows that it costs less than half the expense of using gasoline to operate an electric vehicle — and the availability of more charging stations helps provide a wider choice of vehicles for our residents.”
Confirming the university’s selection as a grant recipient, DEEP Commissioner Daniel C. Esty wrote, “I applaud your foresight in recognizing the exciting new opportunities presented by the widespread introduction of electric vehicles (EVs) into Connecticut’s motor vehicle fleet. Your efforts are helping to put us on a path towards greater energy independence and ushering in a time when motorists need not spend a single dollar on gasoline and instead refuel with locally generated electricity from domestically produced fuels. You are also helping to alleviate one of the greatest barriers to the widespread introduction of EVs: fear of running low on power and being unable to recharge before completing a trip. In fact, your charging stations bring us one step closer towards our goal of providing publicly accessible EV charging stations within a 15-minute (or less) driving radius of any location in Connecticut. With your help, we are replacing ‘range anxiety’ with range confidence!”
The grant stipulates that the four units must be operational by April 1, 2014, but Marcone expressed optimism that they will be installed and functioning several months prior to that.
For more information, call the Office of University Relations at (203) 837-8486.
Western Connecticut State University offers outstanding faculty in a range of quality academic programs. Our diverse university community provides students an enriching and supportive environment that takes advantage of the unique cultural offerings of Western Connecticut and New York. Our vision: To be an affordable public university with the characteristics of New England’s best small private universities.