South Carolina Unveils Electric Vehicle Charging Network

Plug In Carolina and Eaton Corporation kicked off a statewide tour to commemorate its introduction.

South Carolina is deploying a multi-city Electric Vehicle (EV) charging network. Plug In Carolina and Eaton Corporation kicked off a statewide tour to commemorate its introduction, beginning at the state capitol building in Columbia with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and remarks by Gov. Mark Sanford. The implementation of the charging network is underway to support the variety of new EVs emerging now and in the near future and was made possible by the recently announced agreement with Eaton to supply and support EV charging stations in eight South Carolina cities.

The state capitol event featured displays of Eaton’s Pow-R-Station DC quick charger and level two charging stations. Electric vehicles present included the Mitsubishi iMiEV, the Chevrolet Volt and the Tesla Roadster.

The project, which launched June 15, is funded by two state grants secured through the South Carolina Energy Office and features a family of charging stations with multi-port configurations that are user-friendly and lend themselves to a cost-effective electrical installation.

Utility Partners of America will install 30 Eaton charging stations in Columbia, Rock Hill, Union, Greenville, Spartanburg, and the town of Blythewood at key re-fueling hubs in each city. By the end of January 2011, Plug In Carolina expects to increase the number of charging stations to 80 and add locations in Charleston, Myrtle Beach, and North Myrtle Beach.

“Something special is taking place. Our state is one of the first to invest and create an EV charger infrastructure across multiple cities,” said James Poch, executive director of Plug In Carolina. “We are showing the nation that our citizens and businesses welcome these vehicles. Within the last year, South Carolina has had two EV manufacturers, Proterra and CT&T, locate their manufacturing operations in the state, and we’re ready for more.”

The program will provide publicly accessible EV charging stations at locations such as municipal parking garages, public streets and retailers. Depending on host city requirements, some stations will be enabled for smart communications to facilitate the monitoring and management of the statewide network of chargers.

“Through this collaboration, Eaton is helping to create the infrastructure leading to the adoption and expanded use of electric vehicles,” said Tim Old, business unit manager of Electric Vehicle Infrastructure at Eaton. “We’re eager to provide Eaton’s comprehensive solutions to Plug In Carolina’s public electric vehicle program and these events are the perfect way to demonstrate our support of the communities in South Carolina where we do business.”