Houston Partners With The Electric Vehicle (EV) Project

The EV Project, one of the largest electric vehicle initiatives in the U.S., has come to Houston. Clean tech giant ECOtality runs the project and is partnering with the city in an effort to advance the creation of Houston’s electric car infrastructure. Wendy Siegle reports.

Electric vehicles, or EVs, made their initial debut some twenty-plus years ago, but for a number of reasons, they never made it to the mainstream. Not having adequate infrastructure, things like charging stations, was one of the big ones. Through ECOtality’s The EV Project, the City of Houston hopes to be ready for the second wave of the electric car — which is set to roll out later this year on a larger, and more permanent scale. The city’s Sustainability Director Laura Spanjian says it’s important to be prepared.

“So when those electric vehicles hit Houston, we are ready. So that Houstonians can charge up their cars the day that they buy their car off the lot.”

By being included in The EV Project, Houston will get extra help in establishing its electric car infrastructure. Houston will also be developing what’s called a MicroClimate Plan, which aims to create a customized EV plan that fits the specific needs of Houston. Jeanine L’Ecuyer is with ECOtality.

“It is a way of calling together stakeholders, and that includes businesses, it includes governments, it includes people who are, we like to call them EV enthusiasts, but basically they are drivers who interested in this cleaner kind of transportation, and thinking through, what is the best way to do this? Where should publically available chargers go? How many is going to be necessary?”

Along with ECOtality, the city will be working with the Clinton Climate Initiative, and the Houston Advanced Research Center to increase the number of charging stations and to expand EV deployment in Houston.

Wendy Siegle, KUHF News.