Cambridge Medical Center President Gary Shaw (left) and ECE President/CEO Steve Shurts (center) joined Dr. Sam Villella as he plugged his Chevy Volt in at the new charging station.

A partnership between East Central Energy (ECE) and Cambridge Medical Center (CMC) has brought the first electric vehicle (EV) charging station to Cambridge. 

The ChargePoint Level 2 dual port 240-volt station will meet the energy needs of hospital employees and visitors who drive EVs. It will also support CMC’s Backyard Initiative, which encourages clean-air options like EVs. While other electric utilities have installed free charging stations, this pilot project makes ECE the first Minnesota co-op to establish a business model for selling electricity to EV drivers. The charging station will provide the co-op with information about EV energy consumption and its potential use as a load management tool. 

ECE purchased and installed the ChargePoint station at CMC and is responsible for its maintenance. The hospital is providing the site, covering the software and network costs and providing security monitoring. 

The energy rate at the charging station is 30 cents per kWh, which will help the co-op recover the cost of the equipment. ECE will implement load control on peak-demand days. 

Regular users of the charging station will create an account with ChargePoint to pay for their energy. One-time users are able to pay by credit card. ChargePoint handles the billing services, provides 24/7 support for users, and will compile revenue and use data for ECE.

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