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EV Charging Stations Brings Sustainable Solutions On Campus

September 29, 2014 in Electric Vehicles, EV charging, EV News

By Angeline Bernabe, CSULA University Times

EV Charging Station Photo courtesy of Angeline Bernabe

EV Charging Station
Photo courtesy of Angeline Bernabe

New Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Stations are now available on campus!  With initially only two ports available on campus, there are now fifteen ports available that drivers have the option of using, which are located at different areas on campus.

The project to bring EV Charging Stations began in 2010, and after recently receiving a grant from the Department of Energy to fund more stations on campus, Engineering Professor, Dr. David Blekhman, and Director of Parking and Transportation Services, Carmen Gachupin, collaborated to make the vision of more charging stations on campus a reality.

Following the push for sustainability on campus, the EV charging stations have been expected to influence the way students see their future by exposing new eco-friendly technologies.  Dr. Blehman recognized the fact that not many students have Electric Vehicles and uses the EV stations as a teaching tool in his classes. He said, “Staff and Faculty who have these vehicles are pioneers because they adopt this technology for people in the future to use.”

Staff member, Sarab Singh, uses the EV stations on campus frequently for his Toyota Prius also explained, “Students get the opportunity to learn about this technology.  So if they don’t have an Electric Vehicle, they’ll at least be exposed to it.”

In addition to exposing students to this new type of technology, they also hope that these stations will help students understand the benefits of Electric Vehicles in the future.  Singh mentioned, “There are federal and state rebates for students to explore on all these new technologies including electric and hydrogen.”

By using the app called, ChargePoint, one can locate an EV charging station on campus and charge their vehicle for a couple hours at no cost.  The system, which is cohesive with other EV stations at other locations, will operate the same way by using a ChargePoint card to unlock the station.  Gachupin explained, “We wanted to stay with ChargePoint so that the users will just have one app and will be able to see all the stations.”

Another incentive for EV drivers along with these CSULA ChargePoint Stations being free of charge is that they have the option of parking their vehicle at a station all day to fully charge.  CSULA EV Charging Stations are not limited to faculty and students to use, but are open for the public to use.

Since these new stations have just been recently installed, those who have used them over the summer have had nothing but positive remarks to say compared to the old charging stations first present on campus.

Singh mentioned, “Before two weeks ago, we only had four charging stations, and sometimes, I would have to wait, and it would take me until the end of the day before I could park my car and charge it.  Since we have enough now, I don’t have to run around for a vacant spot.”

CSULA Tech Consultant, Glenn Rehl, is a fan and dedicated user of Electric Vehicles, says that the charging stations have been very convenient and affordable for him. Rehl said, “The mileage doesn’t affect me too much, so I can charge on campus for free, get home, and it doesn’t affect me in terms of needing to get gas or anything.” Rehl explained that power is instantaneous with an electric car, and has learned to be a conscientious driver over the years of driving electric vehicles.

With these new pieces of technology on campus, it has sparked inspiration to keep moving forward toward eco-friendly solutions and ideas on campus.  After much discussion of ways to improve the EV charging stations, solar canopies and DC Fast Charging Stations were other possible ideas.  On a positive note, Dr. Blekhman mentioned, “In the nation, Electric Vehicle Charging Stations are something that is developing… This is the most progressive campus in the state, and we’re already halfway there.”

This article is an EV News Report repost, credit: Angeline Bernabe, CSULA University Times.

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