Eastern North Carolina is a popular destination for locals and out-of-towners alike, and it’s becoming easier to visit by electric vehicle (EV). Over the past year, electric utilities, including Duke Energy, North Carolina’s electric cooperatives and municipally owned electric utilities, have helped fill gaps by installing DC fast charge stations in key spots throughout the region, with more slated to arrive soon.
This rapid buildout of charging infrastructure is supporting air quality, saving drivers money and improving economic development by making EV travel more convenient and encouraging visitors from out of state.
Below we discuss the non-proprietary DC fast charge stations east of Highway 401 that opened up in 2021 — many of which are already seeing heavy utilization — or are scheduled to come online shortly.
In spring 2021, Roanoke Electric Cooperative installed two 50-kW DC fast chargers at the Oasis Travel Center off I-95 in Halifax. Interestingly, because this location does not have access to three-phase power, it uses phase-conversion technology to create a third line of voltage and convert single-phase to three-phase power.
In June, Albemarle EMC installed a 62.5-kW charging station at a McDonald’s just off Highway 17 in Elizabeth City. This location is great for people heading to the northern beaches of the Outer Banks.
Edgecombe-Martin County EMC in Tarboro welcomed its own 62.5-kW DC fast charger in June. It’s the cooperative’s first charging station, and it’s already getting a lot of business thanks to its placement right by Highway 64.
In September, South River EMC helped install a 50-kW charging station at Dirtbag Ales Brewery and Taproom in Hope Mills.
Thanks to Halifax EMC, the Lake Gaston Pit Stop in Littleton now features a 62.5-kW DC fast charger that opened up in October.
Right across the South Carolina border, Duke Energy installed two 150-kW charging stations as part of its Park & Plug program.
Two 62.5-kW DC fast charge stations are coming online soon in the City of New Bern, with support from ElectriCities, a not-for-profit membership organization of municipally owned electric utilities.
The Chic-fil-A off I-95 in Wilson is preparing to open up two 62.5-kW DC fast chargers.
The City of Kinston is expecting to receive one 62.5-kW charging station shortly.
City of Wilmington
In January 2022, the City of Wilmington will be getting two 50-kW DC fast chargers in its downtown Market St. parking deck.