Is an electric vehicle in your future? The city has set a bold goal to dramatically increase the use of electric vehicles in Seattle, and that was the spotlight topic at this month’s West Seattle Transportation Coalition meeting.
West Seattleite Chris Bast works with the city’s Office of Sustainability and Environment and spoke to the WSTC on Thursday night about Drive Clean Seattle, pursuing a goal of 30 percent electric vehicles by 2030:
That would be a huge increase, as the current electric-vehicle usage is estimated at less than one percent now. Bast said his group is due to report back to the City Council in 6 months; he spoke to councilmembers in August about the 30 percent goal, and they adopted a resolution of support earlier this month.
A key point is whether Seattle has what’s needed to handle that many electric vehicles by then. A key challenge is to get charging stations in place around the city, in homes as well as public places. Bast made note of a Seattle City Light project working with up to 200 homes for installation of charging stations. More rapid-charging stations are to be installed around the city, too. Charging stations currently are relatively few in number – there are some at the Fauntleroy ferry dock, for example.
WSTC board members and attendees asked questions about affordability and other economic-equity issues, such as whether the cost of this might leave fossil-fuel use to the economically disadvantaged, who are already being priced out of the city.
BUS SHELTER REMOVAL: New business for discussion included the plan to remove two of the four non-RapidRide Metro bus shelters on the south side of SW Alaska between California and 44th. WSTC board member Chas Redmond said bus riders should have been consulted. Chris Arkills, transportation adviser to King County Executive Dow Constantine, said that the abrupt announcement of the removal via signs that appeared last weekend could have been handled better. But he pointed out that a comment period (announced via new signage shown here on Thursday) is open now.
BOARD OPENINGS: WSTC is recruiting new board members, with Ray Krueger the most-recent board member to resign. There was a suggestion of extending participation to White Center and the rest of North Highline.