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Should charging stations at company lots be employees-only?!

Discussion in 'Charging Standards and Infrastructure' started by gg_got_a_tesla, Sep 15, 2013.

  1. gg_got_a_tesla

    gg_got_a_tesla Model S: VIN P65513, Model 3 Res Holder

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    Was in the vicinity of Googleplex in Mountain View, CA for a couple of hours this afternoon and thought I'd do some opportunistic charging at one of the several Chargepoint stations in an open lot at Google HQ while I spent a couple of hours at an engagement nearby.

    I located the charging stations easily enough - they are listed on Recargo but, surprisingly not on Chargepoint itself. Much to my dismay, authorization failed with my Chargepoint RFID card. Presumably, these were for employees only and they use a different authorization setup, I suppose.

    This is unlike the much fewer ClipperCreek stations at my workplace (EA) that have no auth and are freely used by employees at all the businesses around.

    So, should companies be altruistic and let non-employees charge? Atleast during non-working hours such as on weekends (there was not a car in sight, EV or not, today at that office)?
     
  2. liuping

    liuping Active Member

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    I'm not sure if chargepoint has an option to be free for employes, but paid for others after hours. That might be an interesting option they could add.
     
  3. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    There is an employer around here that makes their charger available to the public after hours, so I assume it's for employees during the day. I am trying to get a charger or two in my company's lot and would like to make it open to both employees and the public.
     
  4. PhilBa

    PhilBa Active Member

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    To the original point (Should charging stations at company lots be employees-only?!), I'm not sure why this would be even be a question. If a company puts in the EVSE and pays for the electricity and the EVSE is on company property, why would it even be a question? It's their right. Now it's great if they give access to the general public and probably a smart goodwill gesture but I would never fault a private company for not doing so.

    To me, a more interesting question is should government agencies and utilities (like Seattle City Light) be allowed to have private EVSEs? There are a number that do and I believe that is completely wrong since the EVSEs are paid for by public funds. I'm not saying they should be free but should at least be accessible by the public.
     
  5. AEdennis

    AEdennis Active Member

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    Eloquently stated. I agree on both points. However, some employer "provided" EVSEs have received at least Federal Tax incentives if not out and out grants for the equipment, etc. So, perhaps there should be some period of time that grants the public some use of private EVSEs.
     
  6. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

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    Just installing the chargers in the first place is being somewhat altruistic. Punishing and/or deterring them from installing stations in the first place seems both logically wrong and counterproductive for the transition as a whole.
     
  7. mknox

    mknox Well-Known Member

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    This is a question that utilities in Ontario, Canada are wrestling with right now. With current regulations, it appears that utilities here shouldn't be installing EVSE since it means the costs would have to be absorbed by ratepayers. We have a principle in rate design that prevents one class of customer from subsidizing another. If a utility installs EVSE, someone has to pay for the upfront capital and ongoing maintenance costs. Who should it be? This is something we're trying to work through with the regulators since we (utilities) believe the promotion of EVs is the right thing to do, but we need the tools to be able to do it.
     
  8. PhilBa

    PhilBa Active Member

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    I've never been accused of being eloquent before!

    There are two sets of costs - purchase/installation and usage. I'm not sure where maint. falls, probably usage. In the case you point out, I'd say that public funds being involved for purchase means public use, perhaps for the period you suggest. However, if the electricity consumed is not subsidized, then they should be allowed to charge non-employees for usage.

    - - - Updated - - -

    There really are separate issues - access vs payment. I'm not up on Ontario laws but it seems like they would be ok it they charged for the power consumed. It is often the case that the use of new technology confounds existing laws.
     
  9. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

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    My understanding is that in some areas of the US it's illegal to bill for the power consumed. Billing for the parking spot is fine. I wouldn't be surprised to find (parts of) Ontario has(/have) something similar.
     
  10. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    I believe it is illegal here as well. But you can charge for other things, like parking, or service. This means you can charge per session or per hour, but not per kWh. Obviously the regulations need to catch up with the technology. Seems to be a common problem in society...
     
  11. gg_got_a_tesla

    gg_got_a_tesla Model S: VIN P65513, Model 3 Res Holder

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  12. Denarius

    Denarius Active Member

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    Even if a business gets a tax credit to install a charging station they should not be compelled to make it publicly usable.

    As I see it, the purpose of the credit is to drive Electric Vehicle adoption by building infrastructure. Employers installing them accomplishes just that, even if the benefit is just for their employees. More electric vehicles on the road is good for everyone.

    I got a tax incentive for buying my home, and for buying my Model S. That doesn't mean anyone has the right to come onto my property and make use of it, or take my car to run errands.
     
  13. brianman

    brianman Burrito Founder

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    Ruh roh...

    • Hello, this is Domino's. How can I help you?
    • Yes, I'd like to cancel the pizza delivery for 50.
    • Cancel?
    • Yeah, change of plans. We can't have the party at Denarius' place.
    • Lame. How 'bout reschedule at the supercharger?
      <pause>
    • How did you know we're Tesla people?
    • We just know.
    • No, seriously. How?
    • Well when you called the first time you mentioned something about just stuffing them in the frunk, doing takeout instead.
    • Oh, right.
      <pause>
    • So, about the delivery...
    • Oh, right. Sure, at the supercharger. Same time. Thanks!
     
  14. drees

    drees Active Member

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  15. cinergi

    cinergi Active Member

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    My only beef is when these things are listed on e.g. plugshare, especially if there isn't even a note in the entry that it's not public -- but it shouldn't show up on the map in the first place.
     
  16. drees

    drees Active Member

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    FWIW, it does appear that on plugshare the Google Chargepoint stations are cleared marked as restricted and for Google employees only.
     
  17. Denarius

    Denarius Active Member

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    You have to disable showing restricted chargers in the PlugShare App.
     
  18. thelastdeadmouse

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    A business should absolutely not share their charging points if they don't want to. It took me a while to convince my boss to install a charger for my car, and I had to pay for the charger. If I also told him that by installing the charger, he was giving up parking rights to anyone that wanted to use it in the parking lot he owns, and giving away free electricity to anyone that plugs in, there's no way he would have agreed to it.

    Part of getting these chargers installed is to make it beneficial for those they own the property. The cost in electricity for me is much, much cheaper than a raise, but he's not going to agree to give things away to the general public.
     
  19. gregincal

    gregincal Active Member

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    Exactly. If the bill forced Google to allow anybody to use the charging stations, then it would equally force me to allow anybody to use the charging station in my garage. Private stations on private property aren't the issue it's trying to solve.
     
  20. cinergi

    cinergi Active Member

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    Good to hear those are set up properly (still, why even bother putting it in plugshare?) but many others aren't.
     

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