New Brunswick

Electric car chargers spreading across New Brunswick

Hotel manager in Moncton expects to add two more plug in stations within five years.

25 charging stations now available for electric car owners but still no lineups to power up

Electric car chargers are slowing spreading across the province.

You can power up your Tesla, Nissan Leaf or Ford C-Max energi or Chevy Volt in Moncton, Saint John or Fredericton, and in 25 other communities in New Brunswick, including Sackville, Caraquet, Petitcodiac, Dalhousie, and Jacksonville.

An electric car charges at Moncton's City Hall. (Tori Weldon/CBC)
They often have one thing in common — there's rarely a lineup to plug in.

In Sackville, Jenna Gaudet works at the tourist bureau next to the town's free plug in station. She says she sees electric cars pull up a few times a week.

"During the day, when we're here about once or twice a week, but I know just from experience just from driving by it's used in the evening as well."

Gaudet says it takes time to charge up an electric car so that's good for tourism.

"They've got some time to burn so in that time they'll walk down town at the park or they'll come in to the visitor information centre and have a chat with us about Sackville about their trip, so it definitely brings people in."

That thought is shared by Jamie Burke, the senior manager of corporate projects for Sackville.  Burke says he never expected people to descend by the thousands in town.

"We knew from the onset that it was going to be a gradual uptake in the community, given the technology, the number of electric vehicles in the community. But we wanted to demonstrate some leadership and at least give residents and tourists the option to recharge their vehicles in our community," he says.

In Moncton, Ray Roberge is the general manager of the Delta Beausejour hotel.  He says the hotel's electric charger gets used by about one customer a day, which is twice as many as last year.

Roberge says the small bump in the hotel's power bill is well worth the investment.

"Owners, such as prestigious cars like Tesla, which is really a fantastic vehicle, are staying at a lot of our properties simply because we have these services available. It's a wonderful thing."

Roberge predicts he'll have enough interest from clients to install two more power stations within the next five years.


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