>> new local commuter parking lot
If level 2 - then the Volt will re-charge from empty in 3-4 hours. If you commute-in and are away from the car 8-12 hours working in DC, then there is no difference if the car was ICE or a Volt sitting with a full charge at noon for the remainder of the day.
Commuter and Metro lots with chargers should place them away from the closest point - perhaps at the back of a lot. Not only does that dissuade casual use by anyone pulling up - it also lets you exercise a little bit in walking to the station. Now, there could be a handicapped driver in an EV and then there's the rub in does EV recharging also need handicap coverage?
This isn't going to get any easier and handicapped parking spots have become fine-based parking restrictive - however the number of able-bodied folks I see using HCP parking at my local Walmart is stunning. At least 50% of the handicappers I see pull in and park just jump out of their car and walk briskly into the store. You know these folks will crowd into an EV spot the moment it becomes available - even if there is a restrictive sign there. It's going to be really bad for BEV drivers who also want to use these commuter spots. This is why you buy a Volt - very adaptable to circumstances.
Simple effective solution:
Put a parking meter on each EV space with about $1.00/hour charge. Put a bypass switch on the meter that stops the meter from running if the charger is charging a car, and starts running when the charge is complete.
ICE only cars would completely avoid that space, Volts would have to move when their charge is done to avoid the extra charge, making the space available for the next car. Even Leafs would move when charged, so the spaces would almost always be available as soon as possible.
Jerry, #536 2011 Volt in Fresno, CA
I used to live in Woodbridge, VA and the commuter lots were always packed to capacity. I would find it hard to use unless they put up signs and towed non-EV cars. The problem with a meter is that these spots are filled for 8-12 hours. Even with a $1/hour fee, I wouldn't pay $8-12 a day ($160-240 a month) to charge my car.
2012 Blue Topaz Volt - VIN:#C-8909 - Leather Seats Black with Dark Trim, Rear Camera
9/15/11 Ordered, 11/18/11 Arrived (highly efficient signature zone) Volt Stats
We had a similar problem last November when we tried to park in DC near Ben's Chili Bowl with a Prius Plug-in that we were testing for 1 month. We contacted DDOT (District Department of Transportation) to inform them of the problem.
Looks like the Arizona statute needs revising as well:
28-876. Parking spaces for electric vehicles; civil penalty
A. A person shall not stop, stand or park a motor vehicle within any parking space specially designated for parking and fueling motor vehicles fueled exclusively by electricity unless the motor vehicle is powered by electricity and has been issued an alternative fuel vehicle special plate or sticker pursuant to section 28-2416.
B. If a law enforcement officer finds a motor vehicle in violation of this section, the law enforcement officer shall issue a complaint to the operator or other person in charge of the motor vehicle or, if an operator or other person is not present, to the registered owner of the motor vehicle for a civil traffic violation.
C. A person who is found responsible for a violation of this section is subject to a civil penalty of at least three hundred fifty dollars. Notwithstanding section 28-1554, the civil penalties collected pursuant to this subsection shall be deposited in the state general fund.
Diamond White #B2140 ecosister plate=SLRRYDER
Crystal Red #C8885, Red-Rider plate=NO2OPEC
No gas purchased, fully charged off Solar, OK so I bought some gas to go to Vegas!
DRIVING for FREE! NO OPEC FEE!
My TED 5000 power monitoring
Does anyone know a reporter at the Washington Post? I'm asking because I had another undesirable EV parking experience this morning.
Getting the train at Amtrak's Union Station, I thought, hey, why don't I park in one of the two newly minted charge stations in the car-park while I head to Philly for the day. I'll be charged up for the drive home. Of course I knew this would be a pipe dream, but hey, I can be optimistic right?
This time I have no idea if the spaces were free or not. The reason I don't know is that Union Station has taken to cone'ing off access to parking levels 1-3 for unknown reasons at weird times. I had to park on the roofdeck even though there were plenty of spaces available on the lower floors.
I tried to get (a very helpful) security guy to help me, but after 15 mins of waiting for them to get hold of the supervisor so he could raise the barriers on the level 1 area, I gave up, parked and ran for my train.
So, again, if you are going to put in the expense and have much fanfare around the launch of public charging stations, why are they inaccessible?
I've still yet to work out why Union station keeps blocking off the lower levels for the last couple of months, but this is even more insane now they've put charging stations in place there.
This (and the Chilli Bowl photo) seem like an ideal Washington Post story.
One further note. On my way back through Union Station this evening I located the charging point on the first floor. It was interesting. There were green mats, a lot like fake golf turf, in the parking spaces making it very clear these spaces were different from others, but they were also coned off. It was unclear if you ought to move the cones if you wanted to charge.
The one thing I noticed, that subsequently is supported by the chargepointportal.net website (which has the chargepoint in the wrong map location btw -- how does that get fixed?) is the costs are $3 per hour. I'm a little stunned by that.
So, this I assume means if I swipe my (yet to be received) RFID card, I'm going to pay $3/hr for each hour the car is either plugged in or charging? Given my Volt probably takes about 4 hours to charge to full, that's $12 for 40 miles.. Ummmm.. that's essentially $12 per gallon of gas? (if you assume the Volt would probably get about 30+ mpg if it was a regular car).
What idiot at Union Station thinks that pricing makes any sense at all?, or, am I missing something silly because I'm new to this?
The problem as Chris Harvey noted is that even a modest charging fee can easily be more expensive per mile than gasoline. At the US average commercial electricity rate of 10 cents per kWh, the cost to charge a Volt at 2.2 kW is $0.22/hr; a Leaf at 3.3 kW is $0.33/hr; and a Coda or Fusion at 6.6 kW is $0.66/hr. (Maybe 10% more to account for charger losses but let's keep it simple.) If you're paying per hour then a Leaf gets 50% more miles than a Volt for the same amount of money, and a Coda gets 3X as many miles. Based on the EPA gas mileage estimate of 37 MPG for Volt, and 4 miles/kWh for all EV's, paying $1/hr for charging is like paying $4.20/gallon with a Volt, $2.80/gallon with a Leaf, and $1.40/gallon with a Coda.
As a Leaf driver I would gladly pay $2-3/hr to charge ($5.60 - $8.40/gallon) if I need it because (a) I probably need only a little bit and overall it's still cheaper than driving an ICE car for the whole trip; and (b) if I need it I don't have much choice. I just won't buy more than I need since at home I pay just $0.25/hr to charge. But for a Volt driver, once the charging fee goes over $1/hr you have a cheaper choice: the gas station.
As a matter of public policy, if we want as many miles as possible to be driven on electric rather than gasoline power, for economic and military security and for environmental benefits, then we'd want charging prices to be at least as low as gasoline refueling prices. Then Volt and Prius PHV and all the forthcoming PHEV cars will drive more electric miles.
But if charging prices were limited to $1/hr, that would conflict with the original problem in this thread. With a price that low, and charging stations primarily located in prime parking spots, many ICE drivers would not hesitate to pay a buck for the prime parking. And many Volt and Leaf drivers wouldn't bother to vacate the spot after charging was complete. In my area of suburban Southern California when parking is not free it costs $5/hr. The parking space itself is worth much more than the electricity that could be used in the parking space.
SharkVolt's idea could be the best approach to this dilemma. The fee while charging could be free, or could be set to recover electricity cost ($0.25-0.50/hr), or could be set to recover electricity plus capital cost ($1-3/hr). And the fee while not charging could be set the same as the parking fee plus a premium to encourage use of non-charging spaces by those who don't need charging ($6-10/hr).