Solar-charged car sharing could soon be coming to Illinois – and other U.S. locations.
By year’s end, Evanston may be home to two I-Go solar-canopy car rental stations, where any person with the inclination and know-how would be able to rent one of four solar-charged electric cars.
Representatives for I-Go, a Chicago-based nonprofit car sharing company, recently pitched the solar-canopy plan to Evanston’s Transportation and Parking Committee.
I-Go’s interest in Evanston is part of a plan to build 18 solar-canopy car rental stations for 36 electric cars in the Chicago area by the end of the year.
I-Go, like other car sharing programs, allows members to reserve cars at unmanned rental stations that are often single, sign-marked parking spaces located in the lots of frequented stores and other high-traffic destinations. Members pick up and drop off a vehicle at its singular home location, unlock the car with their membership cards and the vehicle tracks the length of the journey, charging the customer’s linked-up credit card accordingly.
There are some skeptics who say, ‘Well, electric cars. Yeah that’s great, but the power is coming from coal-fired power plants. You’re just switching one source of pollution for another.’ Not so with what we’re doing. –Jonathan Goldman, I-Go EV Project Manager
According to Jonathan Goldman, I-Go electric vehicle project manager, if the Evanston project is approved and built, the company will lay claim to the largest electric vehicle fleet in Illinois and the highest use of solar power energy for electric vehicle charging in the country.
Clean energy for car-sharing “There are some skeptics who say, ‘Well, electric cars. Yeah that’s great, but the power is coming from coal-fired power plants. You’re just switching one source of pollution for another’, ” says Goldman. “Not so with what we’re doing. It’s going to be completely clean straight down the line.”
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