Calgary

Alberta equipped to handle more electric cars on the roads, industry insider says

The director of Peavey Industries, which installs public charging stations, says Alberta has the capacity to handle more electric vehicles on the road.

Infrastructure is growing along with demand for gas-free vehicles

More than 100 people have pre-ordered a Tesla Model 3 in Calgary. (Evelyne Asselin/CBC)

Priced at $45,000, the new Tesla could become the first fully electric car for the masses.

Though the Model 3 doesn`t go on sale until 2017, more than 100 people are already on the waiting list for one in Calgary.

Jest Sidloski is one of them. The director of Peavey Industries, which installs public charging stations, says Alberta has the capacity to handle more electric vehicles on the road.

There are more than 100 charging stations in the province, with the majority clustered in Calgary and Edmonton.

On a standard electric model from Ford or Kia, Sidloski said it's possible to get anywhere from 160 to 220 kilometres on a single charge. 

According to Tesla, the Model 3 achieves about 345 kilometres of range.

This undated photo provided by Tesla Motors shows the Model 3 car. The Model 3 is less than half the cost of Tesla's previous models. (Tesla Motors via The Associated Press)
 

There are enough charging stations in the province to support the current number of electric cars, Sidloski says. 

The majority of chargers are Level 2 stations, which means it could take up to four hours to charge a standard electric car. Level 3 chargers would charge a vehicle considerably faster, Sidloski said, 

"We're lacking the Level 3 infrastructure that we'll need going forward," he explained.

But Sidloski said that shouldn't dissuade people from getting into an electric car. As demand for the vehicles grows, so too will the number of charging stations in the province, he said.

"We always hear, 'there's never going to be any infrastructure,'" he said. "It doesn't need to grow faster than the adoption of the electric car."

"Currently the infrastructure supports what's on the road and it's growing every day," he added.


With files from the Calgary Eyeopener

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