How cities can center equity in EV charging

Last year, municipal utility Seattle City Light launched a project to install approximately 30 public, fast electric vehicle chargers across Seattle. While many cities are building EV charging stations to support vehicle electrification and city climate goals, City Light’s pilot project was unique in how it chose its EV charger locations.

Instead of selecting potential locations and getting customer feedback afterward, the utility asked its Seattle customers to tell it where they want EV charging stations, said Angela Song, transportation electrification portfolio manager at City Light.

The utility received just under 2,000 applications for public EV chargers, Song said, and that interest was evenly distributed across the city’s districts. She identified “listening to the community and understanding their needs” as two key requirements for city leaders installing EV charging infrastructure.