Electric vehicle (EV) sales in Massachusetts have increased rapidly, doubling over the last several years alone. State officials expect this growth to continue as new models come to market, offering increasingly affordable options to local drivers. ISO New England, the organization that oversees the area power grid, recently predicted that the entire region will see one million electric cars and trucks on its roads by the end of the decade.
This growth has been fueled by state and federal incentives, in addition to reductions in battery costs.
And as the number of electric vehicles on the road rises, the demand for electric vehicle charging infrastructure across the Commonwealth will only increase. For instance, communities such as Beverly are already installing electric vehicle charging stations at municipal parking lots and local schools, available 24 hours a day. And Eversource, the New England-based energy company, recently announced the acceleration of its 2018 commitment to install electric vehicle charging infrastructure at up to 400 locations across Massachusetts. (The company has already enabled 2,700 EV ports since 2018 and expects to reach its goal of 3,500.) Meanwhile, the city of Boston has pledged to become carbon neutral by 2050.
Today, transportation accounts for nearly a third of Boston’s total greenhouse gas emissions (GHG), 65 percent of which are created by personal vehicles. In an effort to reach carbon neutrality, the city’s transportation plan, Go Boston 2030, will eventually require all vehicles to be zero-emission. The state of Massachusetts has also announced its plan to ban the sale of new, gas-powered cars by 2035. In short, there is significant progress being made, with aggressive benchmarks expected in the coming years.
As part of this ongoing trend, JME has been excited to install electric vehicle charging stations across the region, supporting residents’ transition from gas-powered to hybrid and electric vehicles. Whether installing parking lot charging stations in downtown districts, which will help attract visitors and encourage support for local businesses, or collaborating in new state-of-the-art residential developments, we are thrilled to support electric mobility as a driver for economic growth and as an amenity that serves the public.
For example, we are in the process of completing the EV Charging install at “The Alcott” tower project for construction firm AECOM Tishman and developer Equity Residential. This building has been constructed on the site of the old Boston Garden Garage, a 44-story residential design that includes a five-story, below-grade parking garage which will be utilized by building tenants and as a public parking garage serving Boston’s West End, home to Mass General Hospital and the TD Garden.
JME alongside, our EV partner Evercharge Inc., will furnish and install 105 level 1 charging outlets, in addition to 36 level 2 EV chargers and one high output level 3 EV charger. JME provided a turnkey EV Package for Equity Residential and AECOM Tishman to help meet the goals outlined in Boston’s EV Readiness Program, which was established last September. The EV Readiness Program requires new developments within the city to provide 25% of their parking spaces with EV Chargers and establish sufficient electrical infrastructure for the remaining 75%, making it easier to convert traditional parking spaces to EV spaces. This requirement far exceeds the amount of EV infrastructure which has previously been incorporated into the design of new developments within our region. More than ever before, developers and general contractors will need experienced partners capable of executing this extensive scope of work.
At JME, we remain committed to contributing to a sustainable future with the installation of electric vehicle charging technology that offers Massachusetts consumers and communities clean and affordable choices while also delivering economic and environmental benefits. Achieving the design and accessibility goal requirements mandated by many cities and towns requires expertise, and JME is fortunate to work with many of the top professionals in our industry. As more small businesses, multi-dwelling residential buildings, and local governments establish electric infrastructure, deploying electric charging stations will be a critical step in rethinking how these new transportation guidelines are implemented.
By: Kyle Gillis, Assistant Project Manager at JM Electrical Co.