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Mayor Wu Announces Expanded Curbside Charging for Electric Vehicles

Mayor Michelle Wu announced the contractors selected by the City of Boston to expand access to electric vehicle charging with a curbside demonstration program. Building new curbside charging stations will create more access for residents to charge their electric vehicles, especially those without private parking or access to a driveway or garage. Through the demonstration project, the City is seeking to test different models of providing EV charging: some will be owned and run by the City and others by private companies at no cost to the City. These two different approaches will help Boston achieve its goal of having every resident live within a 5-minute walk of an EV charging station. This is important to keep up with the growing number of electric vehicles by providing the needed charging infrastructure. The City has selected Better Together Brain Trust, or BT2, as its vendor to install and maintain the City-owned stations and itselectric and Greenspot to operate the privately owned stations. Two models will help determine how the private market can supplement the City’s stock of chargers. 

“The current state of our world includes rapidly increasing technological advances and people transitioning to greener and cleaner energy. As a City, we need to adapt to these changes for our residents and our planet,” said Mayor Michelle Wu. “I am grateful to our partners for helping us increase charging stations in our neighborhoods as we continue striving towards our goal of being the greenest city in the country.”

“Boston will always be a City that prioritizes public transit, walking, and cycling, but we must also move aggressively to help our residents and visitors choose electric vehicles,” said Green New Deal Director Oliver Sellers-Garcia. “As a Green New Deal City, we are demonstrating that an investment in EV charging can make our neighborhoods more clean and convenient, and provide opportunities for green businesses.”

“Since most EV charging occurs at home, making EV ownership possible for more residents with on-street charging is a good use of our shared streets,” said Jascha Franklin-Hodge, Chief of Streets. “We have heard from residents excited to finally be able to charge their cars in their own neighborhoods and they look forward to these new installations.” 

City-owned stations:  Better Together Brain Trust

The City has already selected 11 sites for chargers and is in the process of selecting additional locations for the City-owned charging stations. For this first phase of installations, most stations will be located adjacent to public amenities such as parks, playgrounds, libraries, and within walking distance of small business commercial areas. Parking rules and regulations specific to each location such as Resident Permit Parking or metered parking will be maintained, and the parking spaces will be reserved for electric vehicles while charging. The sites are located across neighborhoods and were selected based on a number of factors, including ADA accessibility, electrical feasibility, and ability to accommodate two 40-foot segments for dual-port charging stations. The City is prioritizing sites that help meet Boston’s goal of having every resident live within a 5-minute walk of an EV charging station, and environmental justice communities.

The City selected Better Together Brain Trust, or BT2, as its vendor to install and maintain the City-owned stations. B2T is a Black woman-owned business based in Nubian Square. B2T will be installing Flo EV charging stations that are capable of charging a vehicle up to 19.2kW an hour. 

“The Commonwealth’s drive to net zero presents a critical opportunity to center equity so that no one is left behind,” said Better Together Brain Trust CEO Shonté Davidson. “While Black-owned businesses continue to face significant barriers to entering the green energy economy, the space is ripe for change. We’re grateful to the City of Boston for trusting us with this important work, and we’re looking forward to leveraging our dynamic experience and local expertise to help advance a cleaner and more equitable future for our communities.”

To inform locations of the chargers, the City has engaged with community members about the curbside demonstration program across neighborhoods by attending civic association meetings, hosting an EV Open House, attending the Mayor’s Neighborhood Coffee Hours, and collecting responses on the Suggest a Location survey located on Boston.gov. The City will continue to engage with residents at future neighborhood events and directly with residents at selected sites. Residents can expect to see sidewalk decals placed on the ground where future EV Charging Stations will be located.

Below are the first set of sites selected for the publicly-owned stations: 

  • Near Almont Playground, Mattapan
  • Near Billings Field, West Roxbury
  • Near Beauford Playground, Roxbury
  • Near Puddingstone Garden, Dorchester
  • Near Hemenway Playground, Dorchester
  • Near the Erie-Ellington Playground, Dorchester
  • Near Healy Field, Roslindale
  • Near North Street Park, North End
  • Near the Honan-Allston Library, Allston
  • Near Ross Playground, Hyde Park
  • Near the Charlestown Navy Yard, Charlestown

More information about the site selection process can be found here.

Privately-owned stations: itselectric and Greenspot

The City of Boston has also created a model for a public-private partnership for the installation of additional electric vehicle charging stations. Through this partnership with itselectric and Greenspot, the City will test how the private market can support in making public charging accessible. These contractors will increase curbside chargers equitably in the public right-of-way – along city sidewalks – at no cost to the City.

itselectric and Greenspot offer different types of EV charging. itselectric will place stations in areas where individuals and businesses may want to locate a charging station adjacent to their property. Greenspot will offer Level II and Level III DC Fast Charging suited for commercial districts and areas with a high level of multi-unit dwellings. Both companies have ambitious goals. The installation and operation of these stations will be at no cost to the City, and through the partnership the City will guide locations for the stations and costs charged to users. This will inform how the private market can meet the demand for EV charging, supplementing City efforts. Property owners who would like to partner with itselectric can join their waitlist here. Greenspot has a ‘Boston’ page on their website, which includes planned locations and opportunities for residents to share input on future locations.

"Mayor Wu's commitment to ensuring every household in Boston is within a 5-minute walk of a public EV charging station highlights the city's dedication to equity and her Green New Deal promise," said Nathan King, co-founder and CEO of itselectric. "Our partnership with Boston is about more than just infrastructure; it's about making sure all Bostonians, regardless of their neighborhood, can drive electric and actively participate in the transition to clean energy.”

“Greenspot is thrilled to announce our selection to provide public curbside electric vehicle charging locations for the City of Boston,” said Joe Desimone, COO, Greenspot. “Our mission is to increase EV adoption by installing conveniently located and reliable charging hubs. We have set ambitious goals to invest over $90 million in the next few years to develop 3,000 parking spaces dedicated to serving EVs. In collaboration with the City and Eversource, we aim to create the best EV charging infrastructure network in the country right here in Boston.”

The demand for EV charging is growing. According to the Massachusetts Vehicle Census, the number of EVs registered in the City of Boston has risen from 936 in 2020 to more than 7,000 in 2024.  Every neighborhood where City-owned stations will be located contains electric vehicles registered by residents.  

This expansion of EV charging stations would not be possible without support through the Eversource Make Ready Program and MassEVIP Public Access EV Charging Incentives.  Combined these programs are contributing more than $3 million for the engineering, construction, and purchase of EV charging station hardware. 

“Eversource is proud to support the City of Boston in the installation of curbside EV charging ports, 85% of which are being installed in Environmental Justice Communities,” said Eversource Vice President of Energy Efficiency and Electric Mobility Tilak Subrahmanian. “Public access to EV charging helps bring clean energy solutions directly into the neighborhoods in which we live and work. We’re excited to be partnering with other strategic leaders in Boston to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and showcase this project as a model for cities and towns across New England to follow.”

“Massachusetts needs to dramatically increase the number of electric vehicles on the road to meet our ambitious climate goals. To do that, we must dramatically expand our charging infrastructure,” said MassDEP Commissioner Bonnie Heiple. “We are delighted to support the City of Boston by funding 60 new charging stations that underscore our shared commitment to making emissions-free transportation a reality for all.”

Construction on this first round of locations will begin on a rolling basis starting later this summer. In addition to the curbside program, the City is currently installing 32 Level II and 8 Level III DC Fast Charging stations in municipal parking lots located in Roxbury, Dorchester, Roslindale, Brighton, and Allston. When all projects currently underway are completed, there will be more than 170 Level II and 8 Level III EV charging ports in operation.  

The City continues to explore additional areas to locate EV charging stations. The public can ‘suggest a location’ using a form on the Recharge Boston website at boston.gov/rechargeboston. For more information on the curbside charging program, visit boston.gov/transportation/curbside-ev-charging

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