• John McGary, Woodford Sun Staff

EV charging station opens in Midway

ELLIOTT CAMPBELL was the first private citizen to use the new EV charging station behind Midway City Hall, which set aside two parking spaces for it. (Photo by John McGary)

On Thursday, Dec. 7, Midway became the eighth Kentucky city with charging stations for electric vehicles (EVs) installed by Kentucky Utilities (KU) and its sister company, Louisville Gas and Electric (LG&E).

The stations were installed behind Midway City Hall by the utility at its own cost, with two parking spaces set aside for it. The deal was approved by the Midway City Council in July. KU brought a company EV for the station’s first charge, but the first private citizen to use it was Elliott Campbell, who drove his mother’s Chevrolet Volt to the ceremony. Campbell said his mother, who lives on Pisgah Pike, bought the EV in 2013, and usually charges it at home. Campbell said he expects the four-hour charge promised by the utility’s equipment to be up to twice as fast as his mother’s system, in which she plugs the car into a standard electrical outlet.

In a news release, the utility said the average hourly fee will be about $3, depending on the location. The charging stations include plugs that lock into the stand when not in use and “quick-pay options for a low effort customer experience.”

“Our publicly available charging stations, like the one we’re unveiling today, are helping to meet the growing needs of EV drivers here in Kentucky and across the region,” said David Huff of KU/LG&E. “In addition to being a destination of its own, Midway, as its name implies, is perfectly situated between a number of different attractions and cities …”

Before the ribbon-cutting, Midway Mayor Grayson Vandegrift said he hadn’t planned on delivering a speech, but was happy to make a few remarks.

“I think this is, really for us, the first step in searching for more ways for Midway to be a leader and create a more sustainable future,” Vandegrift said.

He thanked members of the Midway City Council and Chase Millner, the CEO of the land use advocacy group Woodford Forward, for their support during the project.

“He was really the one who came to me and said, ‘KU does this program (and) this is really a wonderful spot,’” Vandegrift said of Milner.

He joked that Council Member Sara Hicks, whom he called the council’s most green-conscientious member, would have killed him if he hadn’t supported the project.

In a a news release from Woodford Forward, Chair Benny Williams said, “We hope that this effort will also help spur more destination tourism to Midway’s uniquely charming and historic downtown, as EV drivers will now have a great place to visit and shop while they wait on their vehicles to charge.”

The release said that Woodford Forward is raising funds for seed money to pay for more EV charger stations, which cost between $5,000 and $10,000, in the county.

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