A new charging station for electric vehicles will be installed near downtown Oxford, one of 18 stations statewide announced by the Alabama Department of Economic and Community Affairs.
According to a news release, the station will be installed at the Tangmart at 600 S. Quintard Avenue, a Chevron-branded convenience store and gas station near the intersection of Alabama 21 and Snow Street. The charger will have two bays, allowing two vehicles to charge simultaneously.
“This program will have a range of positive impacts in Alabama, from creating cleaner air to helping to sell more vehicles manufactured right here in Alabama,” ADECA director Kenneth Boswell was quoted as saying in the release.
The station will cost $146,993, part of $4.1 million in grants approved by Gov. Kay Ivey earlier this month. The money is from the 2016 settlement of a class-action lawsuit between the federal Environmental Protection Agency and Volkswagen, which had been alleged to have violated the Clean Air Act.
Like most of the other stations, which are to be installed in Jefferson, Tuscaloosa, Cullman, DeKalb, St. Clair and Greene counties, the Highway 21 station will cater to drivers on Interstate 20. The Tangmart is only a short distance from the interstate’s Exit 185, where economic developments including the Big Time Entertainment complex and Planet Fitness have set their foundations.
The station will be the fourth to open in Oxford, judging by internet resources for electric vehicle drivers. One is in front of the Walmart beside Exit 185 and another is at the west intersection of Davis Loop and U.S. 78. A row of Tesla chargers at the Oxford Exchange offers service exclusively to the company’s electric vehicles.
Attempts to reach ADECA and management at the Tangmart for more information were unsuccessful Friday and Monday.
No information was included in the news release about the brand of chargers or the charging speeds they offer.
According to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Alternative Fuels Data Center, Alabama had only 2,890 electric vehicles registered as of June. In a letter dated April 8, the Alabama Clean Fuels Coalition told state leaders that Alabama ranks 48th of 50 states in charging outlets for electric vehicles, with 2.8 chargers per 10,000 registered vehicles. The national average, the ACFC wrote, is 9.7 charging outlets per 10,000 registered vehicles.
Last year, Ivey noted that auto manufacturers like Mercedes-Benz were preparing to produce electric vehicles, and that the state would need to be ready for incoming, non-emission vehicles.
“This is the beginning stage of a great project that will continue moving Alabama forward as more automotive companies … develop EV technology,” Ivey said in a statement issued at the time.
Assistant Metro Editor Ben Nunnally: 256-235-3560.