Surrey will have dozens of new electric vehicle charging stations in the next few years.
In an announcement from all three levels of government on Tuesday (Jan. 19), work on the 40 new stations will start immediately. The funding is for the Clean Surrey Electric Vehicle Charging Network project.
The 40 new dual-port, level-2 stations will be located at 10 community centres, recreation centres and pools across the city.
The project is receiving funding from all three levels of government, with $274,054 coming from the federal government, $228,356 coming from the province and $182,727 coming from the city.
Catherine McKenna, federal minister of infrastructure and communities, said this project will help Surrey, and the surrounding communities, to “be able to choose cleaner, low-carbon vehicles in the years ahead.
“I’ve been to Surrey. A lot of people are driving places. They use their cars to get to and from work and to get around in the community, and we know that we need to be cleaning up the transportation sector and electric vehicles are part of that. But we also knew that electric vehicles should be an irresistible option. To do that, we need charging stations.”
McKenna added the “good news” is that the charging stations will be at community centres.
“They are going to be at a place that’s easily accessible to folks, so that people can go to charge their car while they drop their kids off for activities, while they go for a swim in the pool — I like to say that because I’m a swimmer — while they go do other activities.”
Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum said that increasing the supply of public charging ports within the city “will give residents greater assurance to drive and own electric vehicles, helping Surrey move towards a more sustainable future.”
He said the City of Surrey has made the environment and climate change a “top priority,” adding this electric vehicle program is an example of “how Surrey is taking action.”
McCallum said work on the charging stations will start “immediately.”
The city notes the project should be completed by March 2025.
Meantime, Surrey-Centre MP Randeep Sarai said this is the “third project of its kind in B.C.” with funding through the “green infrastructure stream.” He noted the other two were announced in September 2020 in the regional districts of Nanaimo and the North Coast.
“The charging stations in Surrey will be in addition to 240 other electric vehicle charging stations being installed in British Columbia,” noted Sarai.
He added the broader access to charging infrastructure will “alleviate residents’ concerns about where to charge their vehicle and encourage greener transportation.”
According to the City of Surrey’s electric vehicle webpage, the city operates 33 charging ports. It includes a map with information on each of the stations.
McCallum said there are plans for an additional 79 charging ports in the future.
The city’s electric vehicle strategy, which began in the fall of 2019, included public engagement to “help understand barriers to EV (electric vehicle) adoption and opportunities for action.”