The northern NSW city of Lismore is to install its first electric vehicle fast charging stations, which are to be housed in a new 100kW solar car park to be built on one of the council facilities.
The two EV fast chargers will be powered by renewables, and particularly by the previously announced new “butterfly wing” awning on the council-owned Clyde Campbell carpark which will be clad by solar PV panels.
Lismore Mayor Vanessa Ekins said the project will provide much-needed shade for visitors to the CBD, with excess solar energy fed back into the electricity grid.
“Our community has consistently said they want Council to tackle the impacts of climate change, increase the use of renewable energy and provide more shade throughout the Lismore CBD for locals and visitors,” Lismore Mayor Vanessa Ekins said in a statement.
“This project delivers on all of that and will also provide an electric car-charging station for Lismore, which is exciting news and I’m sure the first of many to come.”
The solar roof is partly funded through a $1 million grant provided by the federal government’s Drought Communities Program to 52 NSW councils to complete infrastructure and other drought-relief projects.
Lismore City Council has been a leader in the development of community-owned renewables projects, including two 100kW solar farms, one of which was a floating solar facility on the overflow ponds of the city’s sewage treatment plant.
There were no further details of the EV charging stations, but the statement said work on the solar car park is expected to start in late November and be completed early in the new year.
Nearby Ballina and Byron already host a number of EV fast-charging stations, including the Knockrow Tesla superchargers at Macadamia Castle between the three towns.
Meanwhile, it was announced on Monday that the owner of Macadamia Castle, and Tesla driving enthusiast Tony Gilding, had sold the tourist attraction to WRA, a joint venture of two not-for-profit companies, Byron Bay Wildlife Hospital and Odonata Foundation.
Gilding is to retire to focus on his family and health after receiving a cancer diagnosis. The purchase means that Macadamia Castle will be the new, permanent home for Byron Bay Mobile Wildlife Hospital, a 22-wheel, fully equipped and self-sufficient veterinary hospital.