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USA: Car chargers abound in Chicago

CHICAGO — In the early days of the electric vehicle, they called it “opportunity charging.” You plugged in wherever you could.

“Laundromats, gas stations that have an outlet, car washes, hotels, churches, friends’ houses … everywhere and everything,” said Todd Dore, a North Riverside, Ill., resident who converted his first gas vehicle to electric in 2003.

With the delivery of the all-electric Nissan Leaf and plug-in Chevy Volt to early adopters in 2011, Dore isn’t the only pioneer getting around without gasoline.

Drivers can choose from more than 100 places to charge up in the area to eliminate so-called range anxiety (the fear of being stranded with no juice left in the battery). And for the first time, the charging stations in his downtown parking garage are frequently in use when he pulls up.


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