The affluent Joburg suburb of Parkhurst aims to install electric car charging points as part of a Go-Green renewable energy initiative.
The leafy neighbourhood in North Joburg was also one of the first suburbs to install a fibre-to-the-home network (FTTH), boasting speeds as high as 1 Gbps. The network went live at the end of lat year.
The Parkhurst Residents and Business Owners’ Association (PRABOA) said it launched ‘Go-Green’ to stimulate renewable energy usage in the village.
“As part of our Go-Green campaign we are planning a number of solar-powered electric vehicle charging points in the village, said Cheryl Labuschagne, chairman of PROBOA.
According to Labuschagne, the suburb is planning to install four charging stations initially and is working with the City of Joburg on a way forward. “They are supporting this initiative, but the current by-laws do not currently make provision for this.”
“Its not about pie in the sky thinking, if nobody embraces the future, we will always stand still,” Labuschagne said, noting that the village was the first to implement FTTH, which has since been taken on by new companies, as well as the bigger, established telcos which has forced pricing down hugely.
Labuschagne said that PRABOA has been in talks with Nissan, which has the LEAF electric car, and BMW with its new range of cars.
The charging stations would be installed with an eye for electric vehicles to park in demarcated bays to recharge. It is hoped that the future would incorporate delivery vehicles.
According to PRABOA, the charging units would be powered by solar, thus negating any potential Eskom blackout woes.
In August, BMW South Africa signed a partnership with Schneider Electric to provide efficient charging facilities ahead of the local BMW i3 launch.
The partnership will see the availability of the BMW Wallbox charging station while the agreement includes checking the electrical installation in customers’ homes, supplying and assembling the wallbox charging point, as well as maintenance and other services for BMW i vehicles.
Launched initially in SA in 2013, the Nissan LEAF is currently only available for sale in Gauteng with expansion planned for KZN and Cape Town.
Nissan said that it has sold 25 units to date in 2015. “The range depends on driving style, but you can get up to 195km on a charge – that is class leading at the moment,” Nissan said.
“We have seven dealerships in Gauteng where you can charge free of charge. Various shopping centres, office blocks and communities such as Parkhurst are catching on,” a spokesperson said.