Fleet vehicle drivers will be able to utilize each new charging station at any time by simply using a keychain fob that is pressed against the charging station’s faceplate to activate a charging session where electricity will be dispensed but a city vehicle will not be fiscally charged.  -  Photo: City of Cape Canaveral

Fleet vehicle drivers will be able to utilize each new charging station at any time by simply using a keychain fob that is pressed against the charging station’s faceplate to activate a charging session where electricity will be dispensed but a city vehicle will not be fiscally charged.

Photo: City of Cape Canaveral

On Wednesday, December 6, 2023, each of the city of Cape Canaveral's six new networked pay-to-use dual plug Level-2 electric vehicle charging stations were officially brought online, replacing what had previously been six non-networked free-to-use charging stations.

These new NovaCHARGE 240V/32A NC8000 Series charging stations will also be utilized by electrified city fleet vehicles as their percentage increases over the next several years within the fleet. Per the city’s 2021 Resiliency Action Plan, the city’s fleet is to be entirely composed of low or zero emissions vehicles by 2035.  

Right, a Toyota RAV4 hybrid and, left, an all-electric Nissan Leaf.   -  Photo: City of Cape Canaveral

Right, a Toyota RAV4 hybrid and, left, an all-electric Nissan Leaf. 

Photo: City of Cape Canaveral

"Now that each charging station is networked, fleet operators will be able to see direct data points for how many kilowatt-hours are dispensed during any given charging session," explained Zachary Eichholz, chief resilience manager for the city of Cape Canaveral. "This will allow for calculations that can give insights into not only power usage but also emissions dispensed and saved when compared to traditional internal combustion vehicles."

Power data will also be compared to fuel usage of gasoline and diesel-based vehicles to help derive information on further cost savings.

Transforming the grid to be ready for more EVs can make it more resilient for improved continuity of operations and power assurance for customers.  -  Photo: City of Cape Canaveral

Transforming the grid to be ready for more EVs can make it more resilient for improved continuity of operations and power assurance for customers.

Photo: City of Cape Canaveral

Cape Canaveral's City Council elected to have a resident/non-resident differential rate structure that will include an increased rate after the first four hours to encourage vehicle turnover.

Resident rates:

  • $0.15 per kWh for the first 4 hours of charging
  • $0.20 per kWh after the first 4 hours of charging

Nonresident rates:

  • $0.20 per kWh for the first 4 hours of charging
  • $0.25 per kWh after the first 4 hours of charging

EV-Ready for EV-Related Loads

Each city building and facility has appropriate electrical capacity to handle the additions of the new public EV charging stations and the addition of future electrified fleet vehicles for many years to come.

An example is the city of Cape Canaveral Community Center, which opened in 2022. It was built to be “EV Ready” with pre-laid conduit for underground wiring and extra circuit breaker space to handle future EV-related loads.

Because the charging stations are modular they can be easily swopped out and replaced as technology updates require to better improve user experience.   -  Photo: City of Cape Canaveral

Because the charging stations are modular they can be easily swopped out and replaced as technology updates require to better improve user experience. 

Photo: City of Cape Canaveral

"Moving forward it is very important we ensure our overall power grid is designed and upgraded with EV growth in mind as demand increases," Eichholz noted. "This is something that should be done anyways as much of America’s power grid is older and susceptible to increasing instances of extreme weather."

He added that "EVs should also be seen as a grid benefit, not a risk as they can be utilized for energy storage during power outages, as backup generators, or help trim demand loads."

Users will need to download NovaCHARGE’s app – ChargeUp – to utilize each of the City’s public charging stations and create an account that will allow for transactions to occur.   -  Photo: City of Cape Canaveral

Users will need to download NovaCHARGE’s app – ChargeUp – to utilize each of the City’s public charging stations and create an account that will allow for transactions to occur. 

Photo: City of Cape Canaveral

Meeting Area Needs While Considering the Future

These charging stations – being networked – are highly adaptable to changes across the market, both in terms of technology and regulatory issues, according to Eichholz. New software can be uploaded to them at any time, and pricing changes can be made within moments.

Eichholz added that this can be helpful in the event of regulatory change; for example, should a national pricing standard ever be implemented. The city is also in discussions with NovaCHARGE in regards to automakers adopting the North American Charging Standard en masse and how that may impact the project.

According to Eichholz, at this time, the city does not have plans to expand its public EV charging stations.

Florida Power and Light (FPL) has is building out its own network of charging stations across the state to meet the demand of what they expect to be 600,000 EVs on the road by 2030 in their service territory.

FPL is also adding dozens of zero emissions utility-scale solar farms to their grid and battery energy storage systems to meet newer demand, as well as even now starting to experiment with green hydrogen plants. 

"There are now charging stations present at all major public facilities and parks helping to satisfy demand across the community for both residents and visitors," Eichholz explained. "Other entities – both private and public – are now starting to put in charging stations of their own to help account for expected demand increases in the coming years. "

One example is new hotel developments within the city, which are deploying charging stations to accommodate electrified tourism demands. Tesla is also building the barrier island’s first Supercharging site on a private parcel on State Road A1A, and Port Canaveral recently announced they will be – in collaboration with Florida Power and Light – installing their own DC fast chargers in the near future.

However, the city will reassess the installation of new stations if deemed appropriate and feasible based on market conditions and real-world data obtained by its networked stations. 

About the author
Nichole Osinski

Nichole Osinski

Executive Editor

Nichole Osinski is the executive editor of Government Fleet magazine. She oversees editorial content for the magazine and the website, selects educational programming for GFX, and manages the brand's awards programs.

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