Schlitz Park in downtown Milwaukee has become the first corporate development in the state to install an electric vehicle (EV) charging station as part of a growing effort to make sustainable transportation easier for its tenants and their employees.
The charging station was provided by ElectriCharge Mobility and manufactured by Coulomb Technologies, which operates the worldwide ChargePoint Network. Major automakers began to sell EV models late last year. Projections estimate that by 2012, 20 models will be available and that by 2015 there will be more than 3 million plug-in electric vehicles in use worldwide.
“As electric vehicle use grows, there will be employee demand for EV charging services at their workplace,” said Dave Hansen of Brookfield-based ElectriCharge Mobility LLC. “Progressive organizations like Schlitz Park are seizing the opportunity to meet this need as part of corporate-wide green initiatives to lower greenhouse gases and to steward independence from petroleum based fuels beyond the workplace.”
Although users will charge vehicles overnight at home, the limited range of early electric vehicles will make the availability of charging stations where people work a necessity, according to Hansen.
“By offering electronic vehicle charging as a free service, we’re showing our tenants and neighbors that we’re ready today to meet their desire for more sustainable forms of transportation,” says Gary Grunau, developer and owner of the 46-acre Schlitz Park. “Adding preferred parking for alternative fueled vehicles, expanding and upgrading bicycle parking and offering free bicycle tune ups are just a few of the other actions we have underway or planned.”
The Schlitz Park ChargePoint station is located in the visitor parking area at 1555 N. RiverCenter Drive and is a dual output unit that EV owners access with an extension cord that connects vehicles to the charging station or through a station cable that plugs directly into vehicles. A text message lets users know when their vehicles are charged. With the ChargePoint Network, EV drivers can locate charging stations and determine station availability from any smart phone.
The only other ChargePoint station in Milwaukee is located at the downtown campus of Milwaukee Area Technical College (MATC). Another station is planned for MATC’s Oak Creek campus.
Schlitz Park is home to major Milwaukee businesses including Manpower and Time Warner, a number of healthcare companies and many local non-profit organizations. More than 4,200 employees work in the Milwaukee riverfront corporate community.
ElectriCharge Mobility is the Wisconsin, Minnesota and Iowa distributor for Coulomb Technologies’ Networked Electric Vehicles (EV) ChargePoint Stations.