NRG eVgo Freedom Station Rollout in CA Accelerating; 20 Already Installed Or Under Construction (w/video)

FEB 18 2014 BY MARK KANE 17

NRG eVgo Freedom Station

NRG eVgo Freedom Station

In early February, NRG eVgo opened the first Freedom Station in the City of Carlsbad, California.

“The Freedom Station in Carlsbad, part of a growing network of Freedom Station sites in California with 19 now open or under construction, is one of eight eVgo public charging stations located within 30 miles of San Diego, giving EV drivers new freedom and range confidence so they can maximize the use of their EVs in the greater San Diego area.”

At the time, the company announced that in California it already installed 13 Freedom Stations, with 6 more under construction and 22 awaiting permiting. In total this is ~40 of the 200 which should be installed by the end of 2014 (NRG eVgo is trying to extend this deadline).

Currently, Freedom Stations feature a DC fast charger with a CHAdeMO plug and AC Level 2 charging point. In the coming months, NRG eVgo probably will start installing more DC chargers with combo plugs, the first of which was unveiled 5 months ago.

eVgo Freedom Station charging network

eVgo Freedom Station charging network

Categories: Charging

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17 Comments on "NRG eVgo Freedom Station Rollout in CA Accelerating; 20 Already Installed Or Under Construction (w/video)"

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Hey evGO (and others), open note to you: See that huge space between LA and San Francisco? There’s more than just cows living there. Us rednecks have EV’s too…….

In fact, they built the first Motel here so you could make it between LA and SF, but it’s gone now, so we need fast chargers……

I have been to Obispo 🙂
We knew some people who had a restaurant there called Tortilla Flats 🙂
And yes there should be fast chargers everywhere.

Don’t they all have to have Chademo and CCS?

That California settlement only affects NRG/eVgo, in California, and is restricted to 200 stations.

Right now, all but one are CHAdeMO and L2 only.

Well, yeah, the article is about the California roll-out. I want to see lots of those dual Chademo and SAE-Combo DC-fast-chargers deployed in California. We have Chademo Leafs & iMiEVs and SAE-Combo Chevy Sparks (and soon BMW i3s).

Yes, they do, but not necessarily immediately during first install. NRG seems to be planning to install the CHAdeMO first (to meet their deadline for 40 stations installed) and slowly add the required CCS chargers.

And why so many down near San Diego? Put them up in the SF Bay Area which is one of the biggest adopters of EVs, ya morons!

NRG has an L2, at Patriots Stadium, in Foxboro MA. It’s one of few non-Chargepoint spots. What better a place for a “Freedom Station”, than “Patriot Place” 😉

We just upgraded our 2011 Leaf with a 2013 that now has the Chademo port. I just used it for the first time last week. It is definitely a game-changer as far as EVs are concerned. I just wish there were more stations. We have around 30 in DF/W but we really need about 100. We have really good coverage in parts of the metroplex, and really bad coverage in other parts.

Then again, we sorely need more L2 stations at good locations like malls, etc…

My biggest beef with these stations is that while the additional CHAdeMO stations are very welcome, the L2 stations are near worthless because they are only installing a single L2 station.

Given that L2 stations are most useful when one is plugging in for hours (and not just 20-30 minutes like a quick charge station), you are very likely to find it in use when you might need it.

They really should be installing at least 2 L2 stations, and preferably 3-4. Then the L2 stations can also provide useful backup charging if someone happens to be hogging the CHAdeMO station.

So the chademo and the J1772 L2 can be used at the same time then? Meaning there is not a restriction to use one or the other. If both are plugged in does the chademo still do 50 kW?

Yes, the two stations are completely independent from each other.

BTW: The comments for the Carlsbad location mentioned in the article mirror mine:

I haven’t seen that as being a problem around here. Every time I have driven past a freedom station and seen it in use it is somebody using the Chademo charger. I have charged my Volt at the freedom stations many times but the Chademo is still free and there are separate parking spaces for each, so that isn’t a problem.

Honestly, I suspect the main reason for including the L2 was simply as a backup in case the Chademo unit was offline and somebody was out of a charge.

I hate seeing all these charge stations clustered in small urban areas. They have the wrong model – The best way to foster EV growth and encourage actual for-pay charge station use use is by putting FCDC stations in the hinterlands and not building a huge charging infrastructure in the urban areas first. Tesla has the idea – all up and down the major long-distance interstates throughout the US, in the small towns along the way. Tesla isn’t “following the market” – he is creating it by blowing away the excuses for not owning an EV. I bet that one lonely Mt Shasta superstation in remote Nor Cal is seeing more use than most of the public stations in more urban areas. I pulled out a map of Northern CA. With an EV with at least 100 mile range, it would take about 36 FCDC stations scattered at key points on state highways and you could own an EV and travel anywhere – Eureka, Alturas, Susanville, Quincy, you name it. Suddenly, an EV is a practical all-round car for the masses who can only afford one car. I saw my first supercharger station last week up in Mt. Shasta –… Read more »

+1 HVACMan

HVACman, I would’ve agreed with you before I had CHAdeMO. I love it’s utility for enabling a long day of business throughout the metro area, and I now enjoy having a DCFC station just a few miles from home; enabling fast turnaround for evening trips after a day on the road. Highway trips, however are another matter entirely. I made a Seattle-Portland run to try it out, but with a so-far unreliable DCFC network, hour-long lineups before beginning a fast charge, and the prospect of waiting 4-5 hours on L2 to make up for one offline DCFC station all conspired to make me keep using the gasser for highway trips, at least until my pusher trailer is ready…