UPDATE: Another electric-vehicle charging station proposed for West Seattle

7:51 PM MONDAY: A year and a half after installing a public electric-vehicle charging station in The Junction, Seattle City Light is proposing another one in West Seattle – this time, at a former substation site in Morgan Junction.

That’s an outline of the proposal, from the city webpage set up for the project. The site is at 4118 SW Morgan, kittycorner from the east side of West Seattle Thriftway (WSB sponsor). As shown, it could hold up to eight charging stations, which SCL says would be accessed from the north side of the site, off Fauntleroy Way SW. The description adds:

Anyone with an electric vehicle will be able to use the charging station. Drivers will need to pay a fee to charge. The fee is designed to pay for the electricity and the cost of building the station.

Construction could begin as soon as the 4th quarter of 2022. The project will take approximately three months to complete.

This is considered a good location for an EV charging station because it is close to neighborhood retail, services, and major arterial roads. There are currently no public EV fast chargers in the Morgan Junction neighborhood.

The substation was decommissioned 20 years ago and the city says the site is planned for cleanup first, with its existing trees to be removed and replaced. For the next month – until April 22nd – the city is running a survey to see what the community thinks about the plan – you can answer it here.

3:57 PM TUESDAY: We asked SCL spokesperson Jenn Strang about the project’s cost. She responded that “at this juncture it would be premature for us to assign a number to costs. There are many variables yet to be determined before we could form a concrete estimate.”

69 Replies to "UPDATE: Another electric-vehicle charging station proposed for West Seattle"

  • Ant March 21, 2022 (9:17 pm)

    This is great especially for all the older condo / multi-unit homes in the area that can’t do charging. 

    • Derek March 21, 2022 (10:49 pm)

      Who can even afford 100k cars???

        • Lisa March 24, 2022 (6:00 pm)

          Bought a 2017 Bolt with(under 18k miles) last summer for $24k; hadn’t had the batteries replaced yet (recall due to fires in about 20 cars, related to defective battery cells.) GM was very responsive and communicated often/clearly about the recall and when we could expect the repair. They gave us a loaner during service.. Got the new batteries a few months ago and now we have an essentially new EV with an in-city range of over 300 miles. We just slow charge it on a regular outlet but can use level 2 chargers at nearby South Seattle College if needed. 

      • StopCuttingDownTrees March 22, 2022 (2:09 am)

        Several thousand West Seattle residents.

      • No Car March 22, 2022 (11:23 am)

        Anyone own the Nissan Leaf or Chevy Bolt?  How do you like it? 

        • Gregn March 22, 2022 (12:50 pm)

          our household has a 2013 Chevy Volt and a 2017 Chevy Bolt, both purchased new. My only complaint about my paid for and cheap as dirt to operate Volt is that its still packing around that heavy range extender engine. I wish that car was a Bolt. My only complaint about my wife’s Bolt is that the batteries they put in them in 2017 had 238 mile range where as the new ones have a 259 mile range. maybe another complaint would be that it is only really fast off the line, not neck snappingly fast like a Tesla. Seriously though, they are really great cars. Fun to drive. Cheap to operate and maintain. Great tech. Make sure you get the DC fast charging option (or maybe thats standard now?). It makes a big difference for road tripping.

        • tonenotvolume March 22, 2022 (7:56 pm)

          Love my 2020 Bolt Premier except for the battery safety recall. 19 cars out of 140,000 sold affected. Best car ever owned, have had no problems. Ditto the DCFC option stated by GREGN, absolutely necessary for trips.

      • Gregn March 22, 2022 (12:43 pm)

        There’s always gotta be that one guy in the comments that assumes that every Nissan Leaf and Chevy Bolt out there costs as much as a Tesla Model S Plaid, the quickest production car in the world.A new  EV can be had for ~$30k. Depending on the model you might still get that knocked down by $7500. A older used Nissan Leaf can be had for as little as $5k, depending on your range needs.

        • Kathy March 22, 2022 (6:06 pm)

          I got a LEAF with 33K miles on it and 100K range for $10,500 and there’s no sales tax on used EV’s. It’s a great car with lots of room inside for cargo and the seats are super comfortable. That was in February 2021, though, prices may have gone up since then and availability down. We’ve taken road trips to the OR and WA coasts with it. You can’t be in too much of a hurry cause you’ll have to stop 2-4 times to charge (about 30 minutes each time). Also, you have to pay $225 more each year than fuel burning cars to make up for the gas tax you are not paying and contribution to charging infrastructure. 

        • KM March 22, 2022 (7:37 pm)

          “It’s one banana, Michael. What could it cost, $10?”

      • Eric1 March 22, 2022 (5:15 pm)

        People who work hard or have a college degree in a marketable subject can afford $100K cars. I can only afford a Leaf as my degree isn’t as good as some of my friends. But considering that the cost of a nice Toyota Camry runs in the same neighborhood as a Leaf, a Leaf isn’t that expensive. Granted, you do need a second “real” car to go on extended travel, but 99% of local travel is covered by a Leaf. Bikes are dangerous and the trend towards electrification, exotic materials, and elephantine weights that the average human couldn’t actually pedal (or afford) makes me laugh. Why buy a bike if it isn’t really a bike any more?  Trains are only useful if they start where you are and stop where you are going; hardly a great selling point. Most people in a city/suburb layout will buy the safest (biggest) and most luxurious car they can afford (gas or electric) as shown by the number of car drivers vs bike/bus/train riders in Seattle. You might as well encourage drivers to buy electric cars by installing charging stations. 

        • Little One March 23, 2022 (2:58 am)

          “Most people in a city/suburb layout will buy the safest (biggest) and most luxurious car they can afford”

          Well that’s not a good decision.

        • Lisa March 24, 2022 (6:11 pm)

          I’m a woman in my 60’s who commuted my last 4 years of work to SLU on an ebike…Why? Because we were able to replace a car with a $1700 bike, I wasn’t subject to  the whims of Metro, or waiting for a bus downtown at night. I didn’t have to pay for parking, I could take the low bridge AND I could get up Pigeon Point at 10 pm after a 12 hour nursing shift with no dread of that looong hill….  

      • NH March 23, 2022 (9:14 am)

        I bought my 2020 Bolt for $21k

  • Aaron March 21, 2022 (9:34 pm)

    Yes please. As the project’s webpage explains, the area needs a cleanup due to contamination and the trees that are on site are in poor health and are unlikely to survive the cleanup. Let’s do something good for the planet and for West Seattleites and build this EV charging station.

    • Darek March 21, 2022 (10:55 pm)

      Those batteries aren’t good for the planet. Better to push bike riding and train than car. Cars take up too much space.

      • Ron Swanson March 22, 2022 (7:46 am)

        The Netherlands is probably the most transit and bike friendly country in the world – it still has a car for every two people.  Electrification of passenger vehicles is imperative to get carbon emissions under control.  And “batteries aren’t good for the planet” is just oil company propaganda.

      • Aaron March 22, 2022 (8:39 am)

        I’m 100% on board with pushing public transit and e-bikes over EVs every day of the week. I don’t think we can solve the climate crisis without meaningfully reducing VMTs (glares at the Skylink people). But the fact of the matter is that ICE cars need to be off the road immediately, and building EV infrastructure is a necessary step towards accomplishing that. 

        • had to google March 22, 2022 (9:42 am)

          I had to google these acronyms to understand this comment!  :)  But now I feel much cooler. 

          • Also John March 22, 2022 (6:24 pm)

            I have no idea what those acronyms mean.  Why do people write like this?

        • Jort March 22, 2022 (11:01 am)

          Indeed, if we are to give our grandchildren any kind of habitable world, such a transition must take place, but it can go hand-in-hand with an overall reduction in our fatal reliance on personal automobiles for all transportation and housing planning. Electric cars will not in any way “solve” the limits of hard and fast geometric laws that prevent successful full-sacle automobile-based planning. These cars still take up too much space for the purposes they serve, and we do not have the luxury of accommodating their space while keeping our planet alive.

          • Kate Wells March 22, 2022 (6:35 pm)

            Fauntleroy Way will have protected bike lanes some day instead of the dangerous door zone lanes it has today. It’s in the Bike Master Plan and makes sense, since Fauntleroy is a popular and useful bike route. I’d rather see cars exit to either the alley or Morgan for this reason.

        • Marfaun March 23, 2022 (7:46 am)

          Visit the SkyLink website:  https://www.westseattleskylink.orgCapacity, peninsula connections and travel times comparable to  light rail, at $2 billion less, 6 years sooner, & lower carbon footprint.  

      • K to the F March 22, 2022 (9:15 am)

        That’s incorrect, @Darek. Batteries and their components are nearly infinitely recyclable unlike oil and gas. As batteries become more common there will be more financial incentive and businesses to help in that recycling.

  • Morgan March 21, 2022 (10:06 pm)

    Not opposed but worried about safe traffic flow…and a Lorax plea for someone to speak a little for trees. Why not also put charging stations privately with the thriftway? More charging is needed, but let’s keep asphalt to a minimum when we can.

    • My two cents March 22, 2022 (6:29 am)

      Thriftway and the lot are privately owned. You can contact them to advocate for electrical charging stations. Initial reaction would be that they would want to ensure parking access for their customers and be less inclined to take up space for this given the amount of time spent in a grocery store.

    • Jort March 22, 2022 (8:30 pm)

      The city would rather take public land in the midst of one of the fractionally small areas where dense housing is allowed to be built and use it not for housing, but to provide electricity to no more than eight (8) privately-owned vehicles at a time. This is literally the city subsidizing private car ownership. Literally.

  • Mj March 21, 2022 (10:38 pm)

    Why is the project directly accessing Fauntleroy an Arterial street.  The access should be via the Alley!

    • My two cents March 22, 2022 (6:19 am)

      Mj Alleys are not roads/arterials, they don’t have the same standards. Check City of Seattle for an overview on the distinctions. 

    • gatewoodguy March 22, 2022 (6:41 am)

      Or access from Morgan only.  Consider vacating alley if not needed for new development to the east.

      • JTM March 22, 2022 (11:07 am)

        Access via Morgan is a terrible idea – an entrance there would be feet from a four way intersection with poor visbility with no turn lane (or ability to insert a turn lane). Fauntleroy is already wide there (where the two lanes merge into one) with an existing turn lane. 

    • TreeHouse March 22, 2022 (8:56 am)

      Seriously? Alley access would hide the availability of these public charging stations and discourage their use from the public that doesn’t know about them. Should we remove parking lot access to Thriftway from the arterial too? Arterials are NOT freeways MJ.

    • Jort March 22, 2022 (9:12 am)

      Are you worried that drivers will have to slow down and be more careful on Fauntleroy? Are you worried that drivers won’t have freeway-like access to Fauntleroy? Help me understand which era of road engineering you’re basing your opinion on. Is it the car-centric era from the 1970s and 1980s that has been proven repeatedly to be a failure? 

  • Rick March 22, 2022 (2:43 am)

    What takes up space?

  • Rick March 22, 2022 (8:02 am)

    And the production (mining,etc) of batteries and recycling(?) do nothing to harm the environment? Sanctimonious self righteous battery brain.

    • Ron Swanson March 22, 2022 (9:33 am)

      Hmmm, I’m struggling to think of the last time a battery tanker ran around and covered hundreds of miles of shoreline and wildlife with lithium.  Or a deepwater battery platform springing a massive leak.  Oil is a nasty business.  The materials used in batteries are (a) improving all the time, for instance Tesla has started using LFP batteries with no rare earth metals in some models, and (b) batteries are recyclable.  There’ll need to be a lot of fresh raw materials as the EV fleet replaces ICE cars, but eventually the metals needed can come largely from older batteries being recycled.  This is already the case with 12v lead acid batteries for cars of all types: almost all lead production is recycled scrap these days

  • Seana Barker March 22, 2022 (8:09 am)

    This is long overdue in West Seattle – more charging stations locally would be great!

  • Jay March 22, 2022 (8:39 am)

    Why are we still building ground-level parking? Make it a parking garage and put housing, businesses, or a park above it.

    • WSB March 22, 2022 (10:34 am)

      The lot is 4,520 square feet. Zoned NC3-40.

  • Put it in the survey March 22, 2022 (9:03 am)

    If you have ideas or suggestions (pro or con) please please take the time to put them in the survey not just in the West Seattle Blog.  The link is in the article.

    • dc March 22, 2022 (3:10 pm)

      The correct suggestion. Job done.

      I have entered my opinion into the record that this is a terrible idea for this site. It’s 2022 and the idea of building car infrastructure here is an insult to our collective intelligence.
      This site:

      • Is within a defined “residential urban village” boundary
      • Is much much less than 1/4 mile from frequent transit
      • Does nothing to acknowledge that Fauntleroy Way is already dangerous due to years of well-documented excessive speed and other bad driver behavior
      • Totally ignores the city’s housing crisis on an otherwise vacant site that could have a bunch of houses put up on it

      Go back to the drawing board, SCL. And sell this parcel to someone who can put some homes on it while you’re at it.

  • Jort March 22, 2022 (9:17 am)

    Eight parking spots! You could build quite a bit of affordable housing there, or provide parking (and e-bike charging!) for a few hundred bicycles. Here we see, once again, the city deliberately choosing to prioritize the subsidization of private automobile ownership. This is a policy decision. Take special note of how the city does not attach a dollar figure to this project, but any time cyclist improvements are proposed they send a comment-seeking postcard to literally every citizen on the peninsula talking about how much the bike lane will cost. But a parking lot to store eight private automobiles in one of our “urban villages?” Fast track! Looks like the so-called “War on Cars” isn’t making much progress at SDOT!

    • WSB March 22, 2022 (11:58 am)

      I already have an inquiry out about the cost and will add that when I hear back.

    • Ron Swanson March 22, 2022 (3:50 pm)

      Charging cars is not the same as storing cars, this is a truly bizarre take from somebody who claims to care about the climate.  

      • Chris K March 22, 2022 (3:59 pm)

        Electric cages are still cages.

    • tonenotvolume March 22, 2022 (8:02 pm)

      Where did you dig up “storage”? Do you understand what they’re proposing?

  • Mj March 22, 2022 (10:10 am)

    SDoT typically requires access from the lower class street, in this case the alley!

    • Mellow Kitty March 22, 2022 (10:57 am)

      Please define, “lower class street.” 

  • Amy Thomson March 22, 2022 (10:14 am)

    As an EV owner, I’m pleased to see more charging infrastructure in the community.And Derek, there’s an environmental cost to everything, using gas powered vehicles has one set of trade-offs, and EVs another.  At least the material used in EV car batteries is recyclable, which is more than one can say for gasoline.

    • Rick Cook March 23, 2022 (12:49 pm)

      I have my little finger extended.

  • Mj March 22, 2022 (10:30 am)

    And reference SMC 23.47A.032 Parking location and access A.1.a!

    • WSB March 22, 2022 (10:42 am)

      Go take a look at the site (we did this morning). The alley barely appears to be wide enough for one vehicle. And you still would have to enter it from either Fauntleroy or Morgan. But they’re just starting outreach on this (the official announcement landed in the inbox this morning), so this is the time to get SCL any and all opinions.

  • Chemist March 22, 2022 (11:27 am)

    The included photo (probably from city light) seems rather old if it doesn’t show the Fauntleroy rechannel/road diet and how the Fauntleroy to 42nd SW turn pocket starts right where this charger lot’s driveway is located.  As pictured, that’d be creating a curb cut with traffic across a marked bike lane where none exists now.  I think that Morgan would be the better location for the entryway and 41st/42nd SW are acceptable ways to get down to Morgan from Fauntleroy.

  • MJ March 22, 2022 (12:54 pm)

    The Alley exists and many times development projects are required to upgrade the Alley for access.  My initial comment was via looking at the site plan provided that shows the Alley.  Alternatively Morgan would be better for Access.

  • Kathy March 22, 2022 (6:27 pm)

    Every car charging location should also provide 110outlets to charge your bike for free and a place to lock your bike while charging. 

    • tonenotvolume March 22, 2022 (8:03 pm)

      Not a bad idea, hope it happens.

  • ColumbiaChris March 22, 2022 (9:09 pm)

    What a complete and utter waste of prime real estate within spitting distance of a RapidRide stop and a grocery store. And all so a total of eight(!) people can commandeer public property to store their cars.

    • WSB March 22, 2022 (9:21 pm)

      This is not parking (“storage”). City rules for EV charging sites (like the first WS one on two spaces along 39th between Oregon and Alaska) on page 2:

      • ColumbiaChris March 24, 2022 (12:22 am)

        Apparently in the world of West Seattle Blog, parking your car and charging it doesn’t count as parking your car.

        • WSB March 24, 2022 (1:54 am)

          In the world of anyone, half an hour charging your vehicle is not “storage.”

  • Marfaun March 23, 2022 (7:55 am)

    I’m surprised nobody commented about tree loss that = loss of carbon sink, oxygen production, habitat, property value enhancement, public health.   If we want to reduce carbon, keep the trees & turn the SCL site into a pocket park, and charge the cars in the SE corner of Thriftway’s parking lot.

    • forestfields April 5, 2022 (12:56 pm)

      The plan is that the trees will be replaced…and for every tree removed, city light is required to plant two trees somewhere in the city.

  • Marfaun March 23, 2022 (8:01 am)

    If we’re concerned about reducing carbon, then EV advocates should know it only gets us partway there.  EVs have similar carbon footprints for production & charging infrastructure  to gas-powered cars, and supplying power requires massive  energy generating infrastructure.  Their advantage is reducing gas consumption for personal road travel.  That doesn’t address air, sea, freight, manufacturing, construction and other fossil fuel consumption, or King County’s dysfunctional urban/suburban design.  But EVs are a start.

  • Pessoa March 23, 2022 (1:16 pm)

    Electric vehicles have only a modest benefit when one factors in environmental costs involved in their production.   You may feel like you are saving the world humming around in your Tesla but in reality someone else, somewhere else, is paying the price.  Large solar infrastructure is one thing, but the idea of everyone driving their own EV is really not practical. 

    • Math Teacher March 24, 2022 (4:19 pm)

      @ Pessoa – Not so, not at all. Most new personal vehicle purchases will be electric in 10-15 years. GM plans to sell only electric vehicles by 2035. That’s only 13 years away. It is stunning how quickly the industry is growing. The Ford 150 Lightning is a game changer. What’s in your family’s earthquake safety plan? How about the ability to power your house for a week from your EV’s battery?  

  • Amy Thomson March 24, 2022 (8:54 am)

    For those of you worried about traffic into and out of this site, I would like to point out that charging stations like these typically have fairly low traffic.  You’re likely to see only a few trips per hour.  Either condo or apartment dwellers will be using these chargers overnight to charge their cars, or people with EVs might park there while grocery shopping to pick up a bit of extra charge.  It’s not like a gas station.

  • N March 24, 2022 (3:25 pm)

    It’s interesting to see how controversial this is.  On the cost front you can pick up a brand new leaf for under $20k after credits.  The average new car price is in the $40k’s.  I for one am excited about breathing less gas fumes and less noise pollution in the future and having lower cost of ownership (no transmission, no oil changes etc).  And it makes more sense here then elsewhere as we have lower electricity costs and cleaner with hydro power.  And charging times are getting faster and faster, the question to be asked is what type of chargers are being installed.  

  • forestfields April 5, 2022 (12:58 pm)

    If you want your comments heard, please make sure to fill out the survey with your opinions!

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