Bruce County to be part of electric vehicle charging station network

·1 min read

BRUCE COUNTY ­– Drivers of electric vehicles will soon be able to travel throughout this part of Ontario, including the tourist areas of Bruce County, without worrying about finding a charging station.

Last week, Bruce County’s corporate services committee approved signing a memorandum of understanding with Wellington County to establish an electric vehicle charging station network strategy.

Wellington County is coordinating a grant application with a number of municipal governments to prepare a regional electric vehicle (EV) charging station network to bridge the gap of charging infrastructure between Highway 401 and the Lake Huron-Georgian Bay area to the Bruce Peninsula.

Wellington County has approached a number of municipalities which have approved, or are considering approving the plan to use a “tourism lens” to site the stations, promote rural tourism, and reduce the “range anxiety” commonly felt by EV owners regarding long trips.

Wellington County has asked participating municipalities to commit a maximum of $5,000 each toward the application to the Federation of Canadian Municipalities Green Municipal Fund. The Bruce County committee approved an amendment to the 2021 budget to fund the amount from reserves for the joint application. The grant requires a 50 per cent matching amount to be spent by applicant municipalities.

This initiative will form part of the clean vehicle strategy, which is part of the corporate services 2021 business plan.

The opportunity to create an EV charging network in this region has been identified as key in expanding tourism and economic development while encouraging the use of EVs.

The application for funding will be submitted this month, with the proposed start of the project in August of this year. The project is scheduled for completion in March of 2022.

Pauline Kerr, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, The Walkerton Herald Times