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More vehicle charging stations coming to Palm Springs

An electric vehicle charging station is ready to be used at the Palm Springs Parking Structure in Downtwon Palm Springs. The city of Palm Springs will be installing more of these with the help of a federal government grant fund. / Omar Ornelas/ The Desert Sun

PALM SPRINGS — Already known for its tourism, Palm Springs hopes to make a mark on the world of sustainability by becoming more electric vehicle friendly.

The city has received a $38,000 grant from the South Coast Air Quality Management District and will provide a matching $38,000 from the sustainability fund to buy at least six new electric vehicle charging stations.

“There is a need. Cars are coming out, and they will need a place to plug in,” said Michele Mician, the sustainability manager.

The city’s Office of Sustainability launched an electric vehicle outreach and education program in August 2009 and since then has added one electric vehicle to the city’s fleet using a previous matching grant.

The city currently has four charging stations, but only two are for public use — one at the downtown parking garage on Baristo and another at the Palm Springs Airport.

The new charging stations would all be “J1772” stations, which is known as a standard electrical connector for charging stations. All new electric cars will be able to connect, Mician said.

Ben Lizardi, vice-president of marketing for Electric Vehicle Enterprises, a company that converts regular cars into electric ones, says the additional stations are a great way for an eco-conscious city to cut down on air pollution.

Having more charging stations around will also make current owners and potential owners feel a bit more at ease.

“Electric cars do not have long range … so you’re always looking for a place to charge it, and there’s just not enough stations around,” he said.
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