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Tesla’s 100-Stall Supercharger Oasis In The Mojave Desert Will Be The Largest In The US

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Johnna Crider
2022-05-23 01:41:47
cleantechnica.com

Tesla is reportedly building a 100-stall Supercharger station. The station will be the largest station in the US to date. The location is in the Mojave Desert town of Barstow, California, around 115 miles outside of Los Angeles.

It’s located 156 miles from Las Vegas, Nevada. Barstow Mayor Paul Cortney shared the announcement during a city council meeting. He said that Tesla is months into construction of the Supercharging station and it is located near The Outlets at Barstow, an open-air retail mall that occupies around 4 acres of desert.

Mayor Cortney said that this was a historic win for the city and that Southern California Edison has a May 30 deadline to pump excess power into the new Supercharging station.

“Actions and results speak. Prior to going to the SCAG (Southern California Association of Governments) meeting a week and a half ago, there was a possible issue that we do not have enough power out in Lenwood for the first phase of a Tesla charging units. One hundred units projected. The largest charging station in the U.S., right out there. It’s the potential of not having enough power for phase one. Well, long story short, we got a commitment from Edison to have enough power for phase one by Memorial Day to open up the first leg of the Tesla charging stations.”

MarcoPTTesla on Twitter shared these images in February. He added that based on the size of the lot, he’d guess the number of stalls would be around 60–80. We now know it’s a 100-stall charging station.

The Daily Press reported that the current largest U.S. charging station is a 70-stall location at The Outlets at Tejon in the San Joaquin Valley. The world’s largest EV charging station is in Shenzhen, China, with 637 stalls. The article also noted that the 100-stall Tesla Supercharging station will be on 4 acres of desert that connect to the Holiday Inn Express & Suites Barstow along the area between the western end of the hotel’s parking lot and the eastern barrier of I-15.

Tesla Is Helping With EV Charging Infrastructure

Recently, Vice President Harris announced an EV Charging Action Plan to achieve President Biden’s goal of building a national network of 500,000 EV chargers.

The U.S. Departments of Transportation and Energy formed a Joint Office of Energy & Transportation that will help build out the national network of EV chargers. The two agencies also announced almost $5 billion that will be made available over the next 5 years under the new National Electric Vehicle Infrastructure (NEVI) program. This would be very good for our nation and EV adoption. Tesla is a strong ally to this goal of expanding EV charging infrastructure. The 100-stall Supercharger is surely just one small part of Tesla’s charging network growth.

Tesla saw the need to develop its Supercharging network early on, and I’m old enough to remember some of the criticisms. However, Tesla’s move has positioned it as a leader in EV charging, and it will eventually open up its network to non-Tesla EVs.  Tesla started doing this in the Netherlands and recently expanded to a total of eight European countries for its pilot program.

Tesla said that it plans to expand the pilot program to more countries. Currently, it’s starting small so that the company can look over the experience and monitor congestion. Tesla is also assessing feedback before expanding further. Tesla needs to make sure it can handle the capacity of not just its own EVs, but all EVs, before opening its Supercharging network to non-Tesla EVs. And for this to happen, Tesla will need to expand its Supercharging network further. This means more stations.

Here in Louisiana, Tesla has plans for additional Supercharging stations in Baton Rouge, Ruston, Natchitoches, and New Orleans. Ruston is a key location for a Supercharger, as it’s situated on I-20 between Monroe and Shreveport and would be ideal for recharging if traveling between Jackson, MS, and Shreveport, LA. Natchitoches, Louisiana is a great tourist spot and known for its beautiful Christmas light display. A Supercharger there would ease travel burdens between south Louisiana and north Louisiana. Tesla also has many Destination Chargers installed throughout the state.

In 2017, CNBC reported that Tesla would need $8 billion to invest in its Supercharging network if it wanted to make recharging a car as convenient as filling a gas tank. The article cited a report from UBS. Looking back from today’s perspective, we can see Tesla can easily handle this. As Tesla continues to expand its Supercharging network, with plans to eventually open them to non-Tesla EVs, and with the $5 billion from the DOE and DOT being invested into EV charging infrastructure, I think in the next 5 years we will vividly see the impact of those investments and expansions.


 


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