ev charging
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The Dirt

Charge your electric vehicle for free in Davis with new solar-powered station

The City of Davis has installed a free, solar mobile electric vehicle charger—the first of it’s kind in the region, according to City officials.

The EV charger has two charge ports and is located in the Boy Scout Parking lot at 616 First Street in Davis.

The charger is called the PairTree and is a microgrid solar-powered charter, the flagship product of Bay Area-based company Paired Power.

The PairTree charger is compatible with all major EV and PHEV models. It has a Level 2 charging rate with up to 7.7kW for one EV or 4 kW per vehicle for two EVs.

This marks the first time this technology has been installed in the Sacromento region, according to a press release from the City of Davis.

Image Courtesy: City of Davis

“It’s an honor to be selected to provide the first public solar microgrid charger for the City of Davis delivering renewable energy for EV charging,” Paired Power CEO Tom McCalmont said in a statement. “Our engineers designed PairTree to provide resilient charging that is fully solar powered and delivers EV charging regardless of grid availability. Our stations deliver reliable solar power to serve communities that are focused on a cleaner, safer environment.”

For now, the chargers have no cost; just plug in to charge, and unplug to stop. According to a press release from the City, the City collects no personal information from the charge sessions, but will be able to collect aggregated data about sessions and usage for its sustainability reports.

Note from the City: The Boy Scout parking lot does have a two-hour time limit that will be enforced and this includes those parking in EV and/or accessible parking spaces. Removing the charging cable and re-plugging in after the two-hour time limit will prohibit additional charging.

Right now, the City has two other fixed EV chargers located in the City Hall parking lot.

City officials say they have plans to install another PairTree EV charger at Playfields Park (2500 Research Park Drive) in fall 2024.

Because the PairTree stations are transportable, they can be moved to other locations based on needs.

All project costs for the installation are fully funded by the City of Davis’ share of the Electrify Yolo grant funding. Electrify Yolo is a regional project with City of Davis acting as the lead agency, and it includes Yolo County, Valley Clean Energy Alliance (VCE) on behalf of City of Winters, and the City of Woodland.

Davis has Memoranda of Understanding with each partner. The project is funded under a 2018 SACOG Green Region grant. The City of Davis’ Electrify Yolo share is approximately $2 million of the total grant. Phase 1 of the project will include planning efforts for EV charging infrastructure, installation of Level 2 and Level 3 (DC Fast) Chargers, purchase of an electric vehicle and these mobile chargers. Progress on Electrify Yolo can be found on the City’s website: https://www.cityofdavis.org/city-hall/improvement-projects/electric-vehicles-and-ev-charging.

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