Photo Courtesy of Ed Reed/Mayoral Photography Office
The City aims to add at least 100 additional chargers in the next two years.
By Michael V. Cusenza
Fifty new solar-powered charging stations are being installed across the five boroughs, set to power the City’s fleet of electric government vehicles, Mayor Bill de Blasio recently announced.
Known as solar carports, each station will charge vehicles using sunlight. These new carports, combined with 37 existing solar carports in NYC, will give Gotham the largest network of solar-powered electric vehicle chargers in the country, Hizzoner noted.
“New York City is proud to be leading the fight against climate change by investing in solar energy,” de Blasio added. “With these new solar charging stations, we are taking a step further toward making our city fleet fully dependent on renewable energy.”
A City Hall spokesman told The Forum that Queens is home to 15 carports; the City Police Academy in College Point hosts two, with others spread around The World’s Borough in communities such as Corona, Flushing, Long Island City, and Jamaica.
According to the administration, each carport can recharge up to three electric vehicles daily. In addition, the City currently operates the largest electric vehicle fleet charging network in the country, with 529 sites across the five boroughs. The City aims to add at least 100 additional chargers in the next two years. Two of those carports are slated to be installed on the campus of New York City schools, to help power electric vehicles used for student driver education. The City is investing $3.3 million in these charging stations, which will be fully installed by spring 2019.
The City’s full network of solar chargers will annually power fleet vehicles more than 650,000 miles of emissions-free driving, administration officials noted. The new solar carports will also enable zero emissions at the vehicle tailpipe and in the production of the energy. Each carport will offset half its cost through gasoline savings over its expected lifespan. Additionally, these units offer emergency resiliency, serving as backup and mobile solar power generators and storage units in case of power loss or a storm emergency. The units require no installation of any type and can be moved by the City’s flatbed tow trucks.