Electric car chargers installed at Eastport Plaza

Find out why East Portland’s first-and-only ‘Electric Avenue’ charging site, so far, was installed at this shopping center …

In the Lents neighborhood at Eastport Plaza, people gather for the grand opening of PGE’s first, and so far only, outer East Portland electric car charging station.

Story and photos by David F. Ashton

Until now, people with all-electric vehicles who live or work in Southeast Portland have had to “fuel up” at home – or just hope to find a charger near their destination.

But, on Saturday morning, October 26, Portland General Electric (PGE) officials – along with representatives from TriMet, the City of Portland, and Multnomah County – cut a ribbon to officially open the new Eastport Plaza “Electric Avenue” charging station.

A battery-powered TriMet bus, and a variety of electric vehicles – including scooters – were part of the celebration.

These “fuel pumps” dispense 100% renewable energy from PGE, says Project Manager Rob Schulberg.

“At an ‘Electric Avenue’ charging station, motorists can come, plug in, and charge their cars for an affordable rate,” remarked PGE’s Project Manager, Rob Schulberg, as the grand opening was getting underway.

“Here at Eastport Plaza, along SE 82nd Avenue of Roses, there’s a lot of vehicle traffic and accessibility to outer East Portland drivers; we’re trying to make charging cars as convenient as possible,” Schulberg told East Portland News.

Depending on how quickly a driver desires to “fuel up”, the charge is $3 for a slower “Level 2” charge, or $5 for a speeder “Level 3” charge, Schulberg pointed out. PGE also offers a monthly subscription rate of $25.

Charging up his all-electric Hyundai Kona at the Eastport Plaza “Electric Avenue’ is Ross Silberfab.

“These charging stations are important to the mission of PGE, because we are committed to doing our part in solving global warming and ‘Climate Change’,” commented the company’s President & CEO, Maria Pope.

“We’re working with great partners, like TriMet, to help alleviate one of the largest sources of carbon emissions in our transportation sector, by providing the first ‘all-wind-powered’ bus line in the United States!” Pope said.

Together for a photo are Portland General Electric President & CEO Maria Pope, and TriMet Engineering & Construction Executive Director Steve Witter.

TriMet Engineering & Construction Executive Director Steve Witter acknowledged, “There are no twirling wind turbines on the electric buses. Actually, the buses charge at night when there is a surplus of wind-generated energy from PGE; we’ve partnered with PGE to take advantage of the cleanest energy we have in the region.”

She’s happy to see this electric vehicle charging station in her district, says Multnomah County Commissioner Jessica Vega Pederson.

District 3 Multnomah County Commissioner Jessica Vega Pederson told the gathering of about 75 people, during the ceremony, “My district covers a lot of Southeast Portland, which is why I’m so pleased to have this investment here today.

“This is a good thing for East Portland; I thank PGE for the great partnership and leadership in making the investment to expand accessibility for electric vehicles and electric transportation.”

With a snip of the ceremonial ribbon by officials, this “Electric Avenue” charging station at Eastport Plaza is open for business.

After speeches, officials gathered to cut the ceremonial ribbon, and many of the guests took the offered opportunity for electric vehicle test drives – including rides on “Lime” electric scooters.

Setting up a display of LIME scooters for demo rides is Skyler Coy.

To learn more about PGE, and electric vehicles, see their webpage: CLICK HERE.

© 2019 David F. Ashton ~ East Portland News™


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