Libraries will add EV charging
Next winter, visitors to the city’s two libraries will be able to charge something other than their brains – they’ll be able to charge their electric vehicles.
Thousand Oaks City Council voted 5-0 on Jan. 24 in a $261,000 contract with Preferred Power Solutions of Bakersfield to install four EV charging stations at the Grant Brimhall Library (1401 E. Janss Road) and three at the Newbury Park branch (2331 Borchardstrasse). The double stations offer eight or six ports.
The total cost of the project — an estimated $356,000 — is offset by $99,000 in grants from Southern California Edison. The rest, about $257,000, comes from the library fund.
Despite a law banning the sale of new gasoline-powered vehicles in California by 2035 and a goal to have 5 million electric vehicles on the road by 2030, the state lacks charging stations. Although California leads the nation in the number of EV charging stations and outlets, the ratio of EVs to outlets is 25:1 and growing.
In late 2020, Thousand Oaks worked with other local cities to create the Ventura County EV Ready Blueprint, a map that outlines where charging infrastructure is most needed.
The libraries were chosen because of their central location and because people tend to spend enough time in the library to get a reasonable fee.
According to the plan approved last week, construction of the stations is expected to begin later this month and be completed in the fall. The chargers themselves, which are estimated to cost around $50,000, will be purchased in the coming weeks for installation once Preferred Power Solutions completes the work.
Additional electric vehicle charging stations are planned for the Bank of America Performing Arts Center and the Thousand Oaks Transportation Center on Rancho Road.
Those projects, planned for 2024, are awaiting draft approval from SCE and money to upgrade power infrastructure at each site, according to a staff report.
According to chargehub.com, there are fewer than 10 publicly accessible charging stations in Newbury Park and none near the library.
While Thousand Oaks has many more, none are in the Brimhall Library (although there is one across the street at the Park and Ride at 1372 E. Janss Road).
Over 2.5 million electric vehicles have been sold in the United States, half of them in California, the employee report said.
EVs and plug-in hybrid vehicles account for 16% of all new vehicle sales in the state.