Local News

Raleigh joins utility in plug-in car project

Posted February 24, 2009

— Raleigh is teaming with Progress Energy Inc. and consulting and research firm Advanced Energy Corp. to develop charging stations around the city for plug-in hybrid vehicles.

The city is one of three locations nationwide to participate in Project Get Ready, a nonprofit initiative designed to create a variety of steps communities can take to prepare for the introduction of plug-in vehicles. Portland, Ore., and Indianapolis are the other cities participating in the effort.

Progress Energy and Advanced Energy will work with the city to develop eight sites across Raleigh for vehicle-charging stations. Some will be in parking garages and on streets downtown, and officials also are looking at installing them at North Hills.

The utility will pay to install the stations, which cost about $1,000 each and will accept credit card payments to charge up a plug-in hybrid.

Mayor Charles Meeker said he wants Raleigh to be ready when mass production of plug-in vehicles begins in a couple of years. President Barack Obama has set a goal of putting 1 million such vehicles on the street by 2015.

"This is an initiative that we hope is going to spread nationwide. We're hoping electric cars will become something that won't just be a novelty, but could become a significant form of transportation over the next three to five years," Meeker said.


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  • Fun Feb 25, 2009

    Solar currently produces slightly less than 2/10th's of 1% of the elecricity we use. Not feasible. Don't believe me, believe the stock market since Obama was elected. PBW down 50% FSLR,maybe the best solar company down 17% this morning after his speech. People are voting with their money! Drill Drill Drill

  • blackdog Feb 25, 2009

    The local production is nuclear, but solar panels can be placed on commercial buildings and supplement what is on the grid. These panels would charge back to the grid to further pay for their installation. After that, the income would be close to 100% profit. This will also promote the use and production of plug in vehicles. Not to mention the attraction to such sites for shoppers and travelers.

  • NCPictures Feb 25, 2009

    Of course the utility wants to get involved with this. It is way to make more money for the utility -- an area that they have not been able to get into before: Transportation.

    The questions that remain are, how are we going to generate the electricity to power these cars, and is it really true that the carbon level would go down? (Not that it really matters as carbon is at such a low level there is no way it is effecting the temperature)

    I think that people dont realize that the power needs to be generated somehow, usually by coal or nuclear.

  • Fun Feb 25, 2009

    "This is an initiative that we hope is going to spread nationwide...over the next three to five years," Meeker said.

    Hoping and wishing eh Mr. Mayor....hope and wish in one hand,and spit in the other Mr. Mayor, see which one fills up faster. REAL science shows if you want to BEGIN to reduce "carbon" you have cut consumption of carbon fuels 70%. It's not happening Mr. Mayor, not in my life anyway..and you're older.

  • DeathRow-IFeelYourPain-NOT Feb 25, 2009

    To followup, I really believe we are messing with electric cars just to satisfy the "save the earth" people for now. There has to be a better alternative vehicle for this to really take off. Like hydrogen,nuclear, etc. In time, for this to work, its got to be a vehicle we can fill up or recharge in 20 minutes or less, and be able to drive it realistically long distances without having to wait long periods to fill up. Electric cars are fine for inner-city government and business use. But not for the average family to use everyday.

  • DeathRow-IFeelYourPain-NOT Feb 25, 2009

    The REAL question is whether they will be able to make these cars financially feasible for the average family to own. If its not at least as cheap to buy and maintain as the average small gasoline vehicle, it won't go very far. And it probably has to be cheaper. Because you are asking a family to make one of their vehicles a car that you can't take on a long 10 hour trip out of town. That puts a bind on the average family. The average family has at least two cars they can take on an out of town trip. So for us to sacrifice one car for a car that is for short mileage, this new car will have to benefit our pockets first and foremost. And I don't see that happening.