A new electric vehicle (EV) fast-charging station will be installed by BC Hydro in the upper mall parking lot off Tsimshian Blvd. beside the Dairy Queen in city centre.
The level three charging station is expected to be installed before the fall of 2021 and there will be no fees now for using the station but that might change later on.
BC Hydro presented two potential locations for the installation of the charging station — the upper mall parking lot adjacent to the Dairy Queen entrance and the lower mall parking lot near the entrance adjacent to the Kitimat Ice Rink. The upper mall location was the preferred location from BC Hydro as it is the most efficient/cost-effective spot from a power supply perspective.
However, staff and council explored other locations in the upper mall parking and agreed on a new space and brought the proposal back to BC Hydro.
After discussion with BC Hydro, all parties agreed that the new location is still cost-effective for BC Hydro and allows better access for longer EVs and those towing trailers.
“The purpose [of moving the charging station location] was to try and minimize any conflict from traffic leaving the DQ drive-thru and any other traffic there. Plus [the proposed area] isn’t used as much as the parking lot in front of DQ and it gives more parking to businesses beside DQ,” Alex Ramos-Espinoza, District of Kitimat director of engineering said in a council meeting May 10.
Kitimat has three other lower-level charging stations in town: one at 954 Wakashan Ave, in front of Envision Financial, one at 660 Columbia Ave W, in the Riverlodge Recreation Centre parking lot, and another at 635 Dadook Ave, in front of the Microtel Inn and Suites.
As the province continues to work towards a more sustainable future, these electric vehicle fast-charging stations provide an opportunity for Kitimat to belong to a regional network of charging stations. These stations will also offer an increase in convenience and access for those wishing to travel to, from, and within Kitimat by electric vehicle.