Kohls plugs in electric vehicle charging stations

Kohls plugs in electric vehicle charging stations

Summary: Retailer will pilot technologies from Coulomb and ECOtality in 33 different locations nationwide.

TOPICS: Emerging Tech

Retailer Kohl's Department Stores plans to test electric vehicle charging technologies from ECOtality and Coulomb Technologies at 33 stores nationwide. It actually has published a list of those stores, which are in the following states:

  • Arizona
  • California
  • Florida
  • Maryland
  • Michigan
  • New York
  • Oregon
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Virginia
  • Washington

Kohl's said it doesn't plan to charge shoppers for the charging services, and there will be anywhere from one to four parking spots reserved for electric vehicle drivers. (It should be interesting to see if people honor those spot when the parking lot is full.) Drivers will need to activate the charging mechanism with either a radio frequency identification (RFID) card that they get at the Kohl's customer service desk or via a phone number that is on the charging station itself.

Kohl's will split up the installations between ECOtality, which is part of The EV Project, and Coulomb, which has created the ChargePoint Network.

ECOtality's Blink Pedestal EV charging stations will be installed at 14 locations in Arizona, California, Oregon, Tennessee and Washington. The Coulomb ChargePoint technologies will in 19 other locations in California, Florida, Maryland, Michigan, New York, Texas, Virginia and Washington.

Both sets of installations are being made possible (at least in part) by grant money made possible by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA).

"Not only are these stations an added shopped convenience, they also encourage environmental responsibility among our shoppers," said John Worthington, Kohl's chief administrative officer. "We will continue to explore additional locations to pilot charging stations at our stores nationwide."

Kohl's plans to give the technology installed under The EV Project initiative about a year in the field; it will decide whether to continue or expand the effort by Dec. 31, 2012. The Coulomb trial phase will last a little longer, through October 2013.

Topic: Emerging Tech

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  • Nice

    This is a step in the right direction
  • If they put them up front near the handicapped parking

    then they'll guarantee non-electric cars will park in those spaces, whether or not the lot is full. It's not like there are laws that will get you a parking ticket to prevent it.
    Michael Kelly
    • RE: Kohls plugs in electric vehicle charging stations

      @Michael Kelly

      Do people park in disabled spaces without permits?

      Surely there are ways to enforce parking spaces aren't there?

      This is a question for us here also with disabled parking on private land such as McDonalds. Can you get booked?
      • RE: Kohls plugs in electric vehicle charging stations

        @richardw66 Handicapped spots are enforceable. There are laws at all levels that not only require them for businesses of certain sizes, but also dictate where they are located, how wide they are, the space around them, and the number required for the size of the business. However, there are courtesy spots (expecting and new mothers, and 65+) that many businesses are providing that are unenforceable by government authorities.

        So yes Richard, you can get booked.
  • RE: Kohls plugs in electric vehicle charging stations

    Although I congratulate Kohl's for this initiative - I am a Nissan Leaf driver - I question the choice of some locations Kohl's has selected. Most of those in California, where I live and am most familiar with, seem to be in suburban and somewhat remote areas.

    These would not seem to be where most EV owners live. Due to the limited range of EVs - the Leaf tops out at 100 miles per charge - I believe EV drivers would tend to be concentrated in more urban areas. I live near downtown Los Angeles, for example, and the car is very well suited here because there are many dozens of charging stations within a 50 mile radius.

    I wonder why Kohl's chose such unlikely areas to locate these stations. It seems to almost guarantee that the experiment will prove to be a failure; that is, the remote stations will be little-used, which will discourage Kohl's from expanding and continuing their efforts. I have to think that no one who was involved in the decision is actually an EV driver, which is a shame.
  • RE: Kohls plugs in electric vehicle charging stations

    You might be partially correct here, however as you state, "there are many dozens of charging stations within a 50 mile radius ...". It would seem that this is at least somewhat covered. There are also cars which use both electric and gas. I think it would service these drivers and some other electric-only drivers as well. What do you say? But I completely agree that EV drivers should be in the discussion. IdeeOhse!
    • RE: Kohls plugs in electric vehicle charging stations


      Yes the Plug-in hybrids can also stay on EV much longer, a Plug-in prius driver may be able to avoid starting the engine on the way home thanks to these.
  • RE: Kohls plugs in electric vehicle charging stations

    Don't put them near the front of the store and maybe make them a bit inconvenient. Having to go get gas is not exactly convenient.
    • RE: Kohls plugs in electric vehicle charging stations


      Yes - a very good reason to put them near the store.

      While electric cars are overpriced, it is good to give the drivers some benefit for their spending the money now.

      The investment that electric car drivers make now will pay off for the rest of us who will get the cheaper electric vehicles that result.

      Since a few car spaces are not going to inconvenience the other drivers much it is worth doing.
  • Will they start selling marshmellows as well?

    When all those Chevy Dolts start burning at the post we'll need something to cook over them while we enjoy the sight. I vote for marshmellows and Val-U-Rite vodka.
    • RE: Kohls plugs in electric vehicle charging stations


      Since the battery incident rate for electric vehicles is very very low, I have to imagine you are attempting some sort of humor?

      The chances of burning Volts is almost non existant.

      I have seen a few petrol cars on fire in my time, even seen one burst into flames whilst driving.

      Based on the chances of fire I think we'd be better taking petrol cars off the road now, they are fire traps compared to electric vehicles.
  • Good luck with that

    From my experience I can only imagine how long these will actually function without damage or theft. With a average electric taking hours to charge. What good is someone going to shop a kohl's for less then a hour going to do?
    • RE: Kohls plugs in electric vehicle charging stations

      @jscott418 <br><br>Seriously??? The charging stations I have seen are built like parking meters.<br><br>Parking meters in general survive pretty well.<br><br>
      The cables on the front may suffer a bit, but I assume they have factored that into to the costings of these stations.

      Some other designs store the cables inside and are only accessible by logging in to the station.

      I guess you have never plugged a phone in for a quick partial charge???<br><br>

      A 20 min charge may be just what is needed, and free fuel is free fuel, even if it is not a full tank.

      <br>How many misinformed and deliberate FUD posts are we going to get???<br><br>Electric cars do not burn, Charging stations are well built and vandalism has been considered and a short top up charge is useful to extend range.<br><br>Next!!!
      • RE: Kohls plugs in electric vehicle charging stations

        Yeah well they're gonna have to become more than glorified golf carts before I buy one. Not to mention the demands millions of electric cars on the power grids make should this idea take off.
  • Our tax dollars at work....

    "Both sets of installations are being made possible (at least in part) by grant money made possible by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA)."

    Great. Our country is bankrupt and we're throwing more money at another unsustainable technology.

    If you shop for 13 hours, you might get a full charge for free! It's simply a "green" PR stunt.
    Uber Dweeb
    • RE: Kohls plugs in electric vehicle charging stations

      @Uber Dweeb <br><br>And you assume that maintaining old technology and financing the oil producers of the world is saving the US money?<br><br>Electric cars are sustainable - sorry about that.<br><br>
      Which car has a 13 hour charge?

      These charge stations are most likely 240 volt so will charge at the higher charge rate (4 hours for Volt)

      But since you think you know something, what is the consumption of the electric car in Kw per mile?<br><br>How fast does the car charge in Kw per Hour?<br><br>Calculate the number of free miles gained from a 1 hour shop.<br><br>Now stop spouting FUD and let the people of the US stop paying oil barons incredulous amounts of money.<br><br>Have you also considered what happened to GM by deciding to drop electric vehicles? Compare GM's finances to Toyota's Finances!!!<br><br>What if GM had introduced the Volt when they developed the technology? Probably would have saved the government billions in bailout.<br><br>So why do you want to drive the country to bankruptcy by impeding the sort of progress that the US is built on?
      • RE: Kohls plugs in electric vehicle charging stations


        Oh and while you are all at this game, why doesn't one of you say:

        'I know this isi important, but surely the country has more important issues to be dealing with now"

        That always works well for defeating any improvements to the world.

        Pretending that a country can't do more than one thing at a time does convince some people.
  • RE: Kohls plugs in electric vehicle charging stations

    I find it utterly amazing on these negative comments about the EV Charging Stations and the Electric Vehicles. It goes to show you how people don???t know what they are talking about. In my opinion, the Government may not have kicked this program off right or they might have done some things that does not make sense. Right now, what you see is what you get.....the Electric Vehicles are here to stay and whether you like it or not you will see Charging Stations everywhere you go. Automotive Industry has approximately 20+ New Vehicles for 2012 and by 2017 there will be 1.7 Million Stations so this EV program is only getting bigger.
    I am an EVSE Dealer/Contractor and my Company sells Residential and Commercial Charging Stations. We discovered a serious flaw in these Charging Stations and we have brought this issue up the some of the Manufacturers. We discovered, if a station was to get hit/struck or vandalized there is an inherent danger of someone getting electrocuted. We have created a safety device that will disconnect the main power feed in a blink of an eye. We have been working closely with the DOE and NFPA to implement this device in these Charging Stations. We are dedicated to make this program work for consumers and do our part in Green Energy. Please give this program a chance and learn as much as possible before you began bashing the program.
  • RE: Kohls plugs in electric vehicle charging stations

    GreenStar Concepts, LLC is a Certified Contractor for Electric Vehicle Support Equipment (EVSE), specializing in the sale and installation of Electric Vehicle Charging Stations. We are a For-Profit Organization and hold several Certifications in Safety and First responder programs. We have invested a substantial amount of time in the research of Electric Vehicles and Electric Vehicle Support Equipment. <br>The Federal Government expects over 1 million electric cars on U.S roadways by 2015 and wants 1.7 million charging stations installed throughout our communities by 2017 to support them. The deployment of these new technologies presents greater difficulty for First Responders where accidents and catastrophic events pose a significant threat to anyone involved.<br>Although Electric Vehicle safety training programs have been developed for First Responders, whats lacking is educational information focusing on the inherent dangers associated with Electric Vehicle Charging Stations. Electric Vehicle Charging Stations are powered by 240-volt alternating current for Level II charging solutions, or 480-volt alternating current for Level III rapid charging solutions. Recognizing the likelihood that Electric Vehicle Charging Stations will be subjected to catastrophic events such as collision, natural disaster, and vandalism, it is important to prepare First Responders for the hazards to be faced. We are the only entity offering an educational seminar to address these issues and provide the tools needed to safely handle emergency situations involving electric vehicle charging stations. Our First Responders are going to be in serious trouble when they respond to a call car vs charging station.........we are trying to do our part to get these First Responders Trained <br><br><br>Thank you in advance,<br>GreenStar Concepts, LLC