BMW Group is investing $1.2 million to effectively double the number of fast chargers publicly available in Seattle, as well as introduce "Light & Charge" charging stations for the first time in North America.

BMW i3 at Light & Charge

BMW i3 at Light & Charge

ReachNow, the mobility services division of the BMW Group, the Woodland Park Zoo, and the City of Seattle recently celebrated the successful installation of the first of 20 of these Light & Charge electric vehicle (EV) charging locations.

In total 100 charging stations are to be installed over 20 locations (single DC and from two to four AC Level 2).

Light & Charge are basically streetlights with charging station attached.

"The Light & Charge system, developed by BMW together with its partner, eluminocity US Inc., transforms existing street and parking lot light poles into connected nodes on a smart city network. The system combines high-efficiency LED lighting, EV charging and a sophisticated Sensor Bus that senses various parameters and connects the site to the cloud. The Sensor Bus also provides edge-computing power for other connected devices nearby.

In Seattle, each Light & Charge site will include one ChargePoint DC Fast Charger and two to four AC, Level II chargers. The chargers all run on the ChargePoint network, the largest EV Charging network in the U.S. Each site will all be available to the public and compatible with any EV that has a standard SAE J1772 charging port."

For ReachNow it's also opportunity to expand fleet of plug-ins in car sharing fleet from current 10%.

"Woodland Park Zoo, which hosts more than 1.3 million visitors every year, is an ideal home for the first Light & Charge station. For many years, the zoo has focused on sustainability programs. For example, the zoo is one of the leading institutions nationally on sustainable exhibit design. It also was awarded the first LEED gold building certification in any zoo across the country. Making the Light & Charge system available to the public also supports the zoo’s initiative to reduce carbon emissions stemming from zoo operations."

"The addition of Light & Charge stations in Seattle will also allow ReachNow to expand its shared fleet of EVs. Today, the electric BMW i3 vehicle makes up 10 percent of the total ReachNow fleet and, with less than a year on the road, ReachNow’s shared electric fleet has saved more than 55 tons of CO2 emissions."

ReachNow CEO, Steve Banfield said:

”Public access to charging stations is a critical step to increasing the adoption and use of electric vehicles. The more EV charging stations there are, the faster we can scale the number of EVs in the ReachNow fleet and make sustainable urban transportation services more widely available. Seattle is home for ReachNow and we are incredibly proud to make this much needed EV infrastructure available to the city.”

“Our hope is that this is just the beginning. ReachNow is committed adding EVs to our fleet and is working closely with the City of Seattle and other organizations across the city to make more EVs and EV charging infrastructure more accessible to everyone who lives in Seattle,”


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