It’s not yet official, but Queenslanders will soon have more charging locations to choose from when driving an electric car up along its tropical coast and what is the world’s longest intrastate “electric car charging highway.”
The so-called Queensland electric super highway – or QESH – currently boasts 17 charging locations dotted along the state’s coastline, from Coolangatta, out to Toowoomba and all the way up to Cairns.
But according to a plan currently being nutted out between various state departments including Queensland’s Department of Transport and Main Roads (TMR), and clean energy infrastructure organisation Yurika, this network will soon be extended by at least 50 more electric car charging stations (this has since been corrected by Mark Bailey MP’s office, see note at bottom of article).
A LinkedIn post issued last week by Yurika, broke the news last week:
The world’s longest Electric Super Highway already stretches form Cairns to Coolangatta to Toowoomba with 17 EV charging stations.
We’re now working with Department of Transport and Main Roads to finalise the development of Phase 2 which will increase the number of EV charging stations to over 50 across Queensland!
Deciding on the locations for Phase 2 of the QESH is a complex process that involves numerous council approvals, something that will take time and will guide decision of where the final locations will be.
While those details are still being finalised, Yurika and the TMR are also nailing down development of an app that will make using the charging network easy for drivers.
For now, all the currently operational chargers are free for drivers to use.
Update: Queensland’s Minister for Transport and Main Roads, Mark Bailey has confirmed further details in a note to The Driven.
“The Palaszczuk Government has committed $2.5 million to build up to 13 additional charging stations on the Queensland Electric Super Highway (QESH). Once these have been installed, there will be up to 31 charging stations on the QESH,” says Bailey.
“The majority of host sites for the new charging stations have been identified and negotiations with property owners are underway.
“Timelines for the delivery of the new charging stations depend on the outcome of those negotiations and we’ll announce the new locations once agreements are finalised.
“The new sites will be located on or just inland from the coast to ensure there are more charging points along the QESH, and in places where they are likely to attract higher rates of use.
“Chargers will be 50kw DC and a dual 22kW AC charger, the same as those used on the chargers installed in the initial rollout.
“The new stations are being planned in partnership between Transport and Main Roads and Yurika, which builds and operates the QESH stations in Queensland.
“A Helensvale site is expected to be in place before the end of 2019.”
Bridie Schmidt is lead reporter for The Driven, sister site of Renew Economy. She specialises in writing about new technology and has been writing about electric vehicles for two years. She has a keen interest in the role that zero emissions transport has to play in sustainability and is co-organiser of the Northern Rivers Electric Vehicle Forum.