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Turning Telephone Booths into charging stations

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This NYTimes piece showcases something that’s been talked about for some time:  Turning phone booths, which typically are adjacent to street parking, into charging stations.

“I think that perhaps 3,000 phones could be converted, with two to three parking spaces in front of each,” he said. In 10 years, he added, it could be difficult to find a gas station in New York.

Problem #1 is that the power lines going to phone stations are usually not able to carry the type of amps that a car would need. That means they have to be rewired and if you are rewiring, you might as well just run a fresh charging station at more strategic locations.

Problem #2 is that there are like 30 government agencies involved which  means nothing will ever get done.

Mr. Johnston said that conflicting city interests would make E.V. charging stations a challenge, especially because different agencies were responsible for the public sidewalk and the parking spaces that would be involved.

“There are insurance questions, and questions about how long a car could park there,” he said. “It gets complicated very quickly.”

Rahul Merchant, chief information and innovation officer and commissioner in the city’s Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications, described the charger conversion as “a great idea we should absolutely entertain.”

“There is enough electric power in the conduits to turn the kiosks into charging stations for electric cars. If we proceed with that concept, we would have to work with our colleagues in the D.O.T. to ensure there are no conflicts on that side,” he said, referring to the Transportation Department.

Just listening to these guys talk convinces me that a fresh start is in order.

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Avatar for Seth Weintraub Seth Weintraub

Publisher and Editorial Director of the 9to5/Electrek sites. Tesla Model 3, X and Chevy Bolt owner…5 ebikes and counting