Tesla powers up at Post Mall
MILFORD >> Electric car maker Tesla has increased its presence in New Haven County, adding 14 high-speed charging stations at the Connecticut Post Mall.
The electric vehicle charging stations have been operational for about a week, and Tesla officials on Friday joined some of the city’s political leaders and mall management in a ribbon-cutting ceremony. The charging stations, which are only compatible with Tesla vehicles, are near the mall’s main entrance off the Boston Post Road.
Will Nicholas, government relations manager for Tesla, said the California automaker is “committed to doing everything necessary to encourage the adoption of electric vehicles in Connecticut.”
The ribbon-cutting came even as the state General Assembly considers House Bill 7097, which would authorize the direct sale of electric vehicles without existing dealership franchise agreements.
“Growing the state’s charging network is an important part of this mission,” Nicholas said in a statement. “Investments like these are the first of many to come. If we’re allowed to sell our products in Connecticut with the passage of HB 7097, we will open many locations that will further educate the general public on the benefits of sustainable energy.”
Milford is already home to a Tesla service center, about a mile south of the mall on the Post Road.
The charging station at the mall is the largest on the East Coast in number of charging stalls, he said. And unlike some other lower power-charging stations that are publicly available, the so-called Supercharger units are able to repower electric vehicles in minutes rather than hours, according to Nicholas.
Dan Kiley, general manager of Connecticut Post Mall, said Tesla officials approached management there late last year about installing a charging center.
“They had installed a similar charging station at Centennial mall in California, so our parent company was familiar with them,” Kiley said of the consortium that owns the Connecticut Post Mall. “It provides us with an amenity to offer to our customers that we couldn’t have done on our own.”
The mall-Tesla deal aligns with Centennial’s multi-year strategic energy and sustainability plan, he said.
“It will serve as a road map for increasing energy efficiency and environmentally friendly practices across the entire Centennial portfolio,” Kiley said.
Mayor Benjamin G. Blake said the new charging stations make the city “a greener place to live and drive.”
Locating the Supercharger repowering station at the Connecticut Post Mall means Tesla now operates five high-speed charging stations and 27 “destination chargers” across Connecticut. Destination chargers repower electric vehicles at a slower rate of speed over a period of six to nine hours.
Tesla plans to have eight more high-speed charger locations and as many as 25 more destination repowering units around the state by the end of this year.
Call Luther Turmelle at 203-680-9388.