VI. PROMOTE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT BY INVESTING IN ELECTRIC TRANSPORTATION

There are many economic development benefits of electrifying transportation to the local economy. 

  1. Tax dollars saved operating electric public fleets can be invested in other areas.

  2. Purchasing “local” electricity instead of out-of-state gas keeps transportation dollars circulating in Florida.

  3. Increased spending on electricity for transportation puts downward pressure on electricity rates for all ratepayers.   

  4. Increased spending power of consumers saving $1,000+/year on reduced fuel and maintenance costs with EVs.

  5. Price-stability of electricity vs gasoline/diesel for fleet fuel budgeting.

  6. Value of stored energy in EV batteries that can serve the grid to meet peak-demand needs and resilience during an emergency.

  7. Ability to pair with solar spurring on another clean energy sector and enabling the cascading economic development benefits.

  8. Public health dollars saved by reduced air pollution leading to reduced disease and ER visits and increased productivity.

  9. Climate-cost avoidance achieved by reducing transportation carbon emissions and maximized by cleaning the grid in parallel.


 Those benefits can be maximized through strategic partnerships that highlight the value the city places on advanced technology solutions.  

A. Strategic Charging Incentives for EVs 

Discounted charging rates for EVs at city-owned chargers in targeted areas within the city can attract EV drivers for a two-fold benefit. It increases spending opportunities for EV drivers in downtown while charging and directs EVs to parking decks/lots that are underutilized. Dedicated EV-designated parking spaces and signage (include training for law enforcement for blocking EV spots [i.e. car must be plugged in in order to qualify]) make charging visible and demonstrate the city’s commitment to clean energy.

 

Examples:

  • Coral Gables, FL Provides free parking and EV charging. 

  • Sacramento, CA Provides free or discounted parking and charging to EV drivers. Participants receive free parking until EV parking transactions exceed 5% of overall parking transactions in any one garage, at which point all EV program participants for that garage will be charged 50% of regular parking fees for the garage.

B. Engage Economic Development Offices

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i. ​Public-Private Partnerships

Cities and counties should engage economic development offices to cultivate partnerships that would accelerate EV market development. 

 

Example:

 

ii. Marketing Material

Integrate information into marketing collateral that provide awareness of the city’s electric transportation successes both externally and internally. 

 

Example: 

 

iii. Workforce Development

Engage regional businesses and entrepreneurs to identify demonstration and collaboration opportunities.

 

Example:

 

iv. DC Fast Charging Hubs

Cities can leverage public-private partnerships to install direct current (DC) fast charging ‘hubs’ to grow the infrastructure needed to support different types of electric transportation. High powered hubs can also be co-located with transit and school bus infrastructure to maximize efficiency and decrease costs. 

 

  1. Electric Taxi, Uber/LYFT TNC Targets 

Transportation Network Companies (TNCs) are increasing among cities and their greenhouse gas emissions are also increasing. Cities and Counties should engage directly with TNCs to ensure EV adoption and charging infrastructure is being planned accordingly. 

 

Example:

 

  2.  Multi Unit Dwelling and On-Street Parking Targets

Cities and counties are seeing a rise in multi-unit dwellings and many urban neighborhoods lack access to off street parking. In both scenarios, home charging, which accounts for 80+% of an EV driver’s charging needs, is lacking. Fast charging neighborhood  hubs can serve as an alternative ‘home charging’ option and make EV ownership accessible to more residents.  

 

 3.  Resiliency/Evacuations Targets

When evacuation is necessary, more fast charges will be needed. Hubs or depots designed to serve a specific need most days, such as charging transit buses, school buses, or rideshare, can be utilized for evacuation when needed. Such cross utilization requires careful planning and can make hub installations more economical by spreading the costs over multiple beneficiaries.   

 

 4.  Downtown Parking and Congestion Mitigation

Public fast charging and Level II charging hubs can entice EV drivers to the edge of the downtown core to locations such as park and rides from where (electric) shuttles can provide access into the city. This can reduce the need for additional parking, ease the strain on existing parking, and reduce downtown congestion while providing EV drivers with the benefit of charging.  

C. City EV Charging Station Incentives 

Cities offer a rebate for the equipment and labor costs associated with the installation of both public and private EV charging stations. Cities can direct residents toward grant opportunities such as the Charge Up! program, which covers up to 50% of EVSE costs. The funds come from pollution recovery fees.

 

Example:

D. EV Group Buy Program

Local governments can partner with local dealerships to coordinate group buy programs for EVs. Group buy programs help raise consumer awareness about opportunities to purchase an EV and help consumers get a good deal.

 

Example: