Swampscott Renewable Energy Committee to implement more EV charging stations

SWAMPSCOTT — The Renewable Energy Committee (REC) is attempting to get more electric vehicle (EV) charging stations installed throughout town.

To make this goal a reality the committee has been reaching out to local property owners, but it’s proving harder “than we want it to be,” Chair Ryan Hale said.

“We have reached out a few times to the management companies in Vinnin Square like Kimco and some of the other commercial management companies and we just haven’t been able to find the right context to engage with them,” Hale said. “We’re kind of stuck at starting the conversation.”

Currently there are two charging stations at Town Hall and a “handful” at Swampscott High School, he said.

“I know the police chief is interested in installing charging stations as part of a solar carport project that he wants to start at the police station but so far we have we do not have any charging stations installed beyond kind of town property and that’s the part that we’re looking to change,” Hale said.

According to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Alternative Fuels Data Center in order to keep up with the growing number of EV’s, “a robust network of stations for both consumers and fleets” is required. Besides the current charging stations on town property, the next closest stations are in Lynn, Marblehead, and Salem, according to the Alternative Fuelling Station Locator map.

The goal for Swampscott is to have “a couple dozen” installed at the Vinnin Square shopping area, parking lots near the beaches, and at the sports facilities like the football field, Hale said.

“We certainly have the space to handle maybe two dozen of them, which would be a good target and that’s what we’re trying to start that conversation about,” Hale said.

The REC is also in the process of updating their page on the town’s website to include more resources for the community.

“What we could do as a committee is keep our website up to date so [if] people want information, that’s easily accessible,” Committee member Martha Schmitt said at the committee’s meeting Tuesday.

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