How to charge an electric vehicle is one thing, where and when to charge it is also on the table.

Today, the where.

ECC ran a blog recently about a gasoline station that converted 100% to electric vehicle charging. First in the US to do that.

Who says that an EV owner has to go to one specific place, just like a gasoline station, to charge?

Let’s use gasoline stations as examples. Many of our readers recall when a gas station was just that, only liquid fuels. Then stations started carrying snacks and drinks. Then they started to co-locate fast food franchises. It all made sense. If a driver was stopping anyhow there was a chance to sell food in addition to fuel.

Now, check this: “McDonald’s has grown to become Sweden’s largest restaurant chain for electric car charging … the mega-chain now counts with 55 charging stations around the Scandinavian country … McDonald’s aims to include charging stations at all its drive-thru restaurants.”

The business concept flipped, now restaurants can offer EV charging since people will spend time eating anyway. That makes it easier to charge an EV and encourages adoption of the vehicles since charging is simpler.

It’s not only fast food places. The report, Why Building Owners Should Care About Increasing EV Adoption, explains that chargers can serve many EV owners with the right planning.

There’s a catch, though: “EVs come with environmental, health, and economic benefits, however, they can also result in higher electricity costs for building owners if not properly managed. Our analysis, focused on office workplace charging, demonstrates that EVs could increase energy costs 45 to 89 percent IF charging is not managed.”

Shop and charge at the same time

In other words, help people charge EVs when demand is low, not high. Charging EVs at work, when everyone is at work, might not do well. Having an energy management system to monitor and manage power usage may be necessary to keep demand and cost under control.

Or, charge them off-peak, at home (house, apartment building), or when shopping or working out in the evening, for instance. That takes charging infrastructure, which is happening slowly.

The big message is that the old gasoline filling station concept has to make way for a new kind of filling station. It can be co-located with other businesses or at home to help keep EVs charged.