Cities of Saint Paul and Minneapolis launch EV Spot Network

Cities of Saint Paul and Minneapolis launch EV Spot Network

09 Feb 2022

The cities of Saint Paul and Minneapolis are launching the EV Spot Network, a system of 100% renewably powered on-street EV Spots that can be used to charge both private electric vehicles, as well as the new Evie Carshare vehicles.

The EV Spot Network is a system of curbside EV Spots within a 35-square-mile service area in Saint Paul and Minneapolis that offer the public access to electric vehicle charging for both private vehicles and a new publicly operated community carshare service called Evie Carshare. Each EV Spot Charging location has two dedicated parking spaces for personal vehicles and two spaces for Evies. 

“This network of chargers and carshare is here to support electric vehicle usage for all residents and visitors. With a robust charging infrastructure, Saint Paul and Minneapolis will be a welcoming place for people driving EVs and those who need a convenient way to get around town,” commented Sean Kershaw, Director of the City of Saint Paul Public Works. 

The EV Spot Network will begin operations starting on Feb. 2 with its first EV Spot locations available for public use at: 

  • Sherburne & Dale Street (Saint Paul)
  • Margaret Street & E 7thStreet (Saint Paul) 
  • Colfax & Hennepin Avenue (Minneapolis)
  • Chicago & Franklin Avenue (Minneapolis)
  • 13thAvenue SE & 4th Street SE (Minneapolis) 

By the time all 70 EV Spot Charging locations are installed and activated, it will increase the number of public charging ports in the Twin Cities by 50%. EV Spots will be located from Saint Paul’s West Side to East Side, and in North Minneapolis to South Minneapolis, and many other neighborhoods in the two cities. 

As locations get installed and become operational, users can find active EV Spots at www.plugshare.com. The EV Spot Network should be fully-operational by fall 2022. 

Designed and developed in the Twin Cities for the Twin Cities, this is the nation’s largest publicly owned electric vehicle initiative to date. The public-private partnership includes renewable electric infrastructure provided by Xcel Energy, a carshare fleet leased by the City of Saint Paul, and Evie Carshare operated by local nonprofit HOURCAR. 

Evie Carshare is built around convenience and affordability for all users. Evie Carshare members will be able to pick up a car, drive to their destination, and park on the street within the Home Area or at an EV Spot for charging. Initially the Evie Carshare fleet will be 101 cars, with an eventual total fleet size of 171 electric vehicles. The rate structure includes a qualified low-income plan, and even full-price options are approximately half the cost of what other one-way carshare services charge elsewhere in the U.S.  

The combination of on-street charging for private vehicles and an electric carsharing network is an innovative approach to advancing access to electric vehicles. Charging for personal vehicles can be activated by credit card or the ZEFNET Charge app. 

“We’re thrilled to present this positive new development in our cities’ histories as we make electric vehicle usage and ownership more accessible for everyone,” said Brette Hjelle, interim director of Minneapolis Public Works. 

The EV Spot Network responds to a growing need for public charging infrastructure to support electric vehicle owners who cannot charge at home, drivers who need to charge during the workday, and commuters and visitors from out of town. In addition to improving transportation options for residents and visitors, the project is a substantial investment in EV technology to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, combat climate change, increase reliance on renewable energy, and make the air quality cleaner and healthier for all. 

Several philanthropic efforts, as well as city, regional, state, and federal agencies contributed funding to this project. Planning and implementation involved a wide variety of community organizations and direct feedback from the public. Local company ZEF Energy won the contract to supply and install the electric vehicle chargers.    

To learn more about the EV Spot Network, visit www.EVSpotNetwork.com.

About EV Spot Network 

The EV Spot Network is the nation’s largest publicly owned, renewably powered community electric vehicle (EV) initiative, serving and developed by the Cities of Saint Paul and Minneapolis, Minnesota. Featuring 70 “EV Spots”, the network includes EV charging for privately-owned vehicles, and dedicated charging for Evie Carshare. With a mission to provide more sustainable travel options and support the region’s carbon emission reduction goals, the EV Spot Network will help make it an easy choice for residents to transition to electric vehicles or just use an electric vehicle when they need it via Evie Carshare. The EV Spot Network has been developed in partnership with Xcel Energy and HOURCAR, and funded by philanthropic sources, and city, regional, and federal government agencies. 

The EV Spot Network and Evie Carshare are part of a broader push by Saint Paul to lead on climate action and was supported by the Bloomberg Philanthropies American Cities Climate Challenge. In October 2018, Saint Paul was selected as one of the 25 winning cities in the Climate Challenge, which is helping cities set and surpass ambitious climate goals by ramping up action in the two highest-emitting sectors in cities: transportation and buildings. Minneapolis advanced its mobility work through the Bloomberg American Cities Climate Challenge program by piloting Mobility Hubs. The City plans to connect to the EV Spot Network at its mobility hubs to expand access and increase multi-modal trips in alignment with the City’s Transportation Action Plan. 

This work is also supported by the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, and Federal Congestion Mitigation and Air Quality dollars granted by the Metropolitan Council’s Regional Solicitation process. A variety of other philanthropies and agencies supported the planning and community involvement that helped design and advance the EV Spot Network and Evie Carshare.  

Source: Minneapolis Government