05 January 2010

Public power for electric car charging

I have heard there is public access to power for slow chargers (so called "level one" charging) in Washington DC but we did not look them up on our trip. However I have seen them at the Lehigh Valley mall in Allentown PA and I hear the Saucon Valley mall and King of Prussia mall also has them. The security people have the electric Gem cars for patrolling, and a few spots are reserved next to their parking spots with 20 amp 120 volt GFI outlets by each one.

The photo was taken on Christmas Eve at Lehigh Valley mall, so it is not too surprising that someone parked in the spots reserved for charging electric cars. I will contact security at the mall to make sure a charging spot is available before driving the Mini E there and charging. These spots are just to the left of the Apple computer store, which is to the right of the photo frame.

It would be fun to get two or three Mini Es to go together and all charge at once.


  1. What I wouldnt give for a fast charger at the King of Prussia Mall, as I'm always driving down there. Any idea where the slow charger is located? I wounder if they would mind if I plugged in there for 24 hours to get a full charge.

  2. To be fair, the sign doesn't say "parking reserved for plug-in vehicles." They reserved the outlet, not the parking spot. The spot may be too valuable to sit empty that often if there aren't enough electric vehicles in the area. (Obviously this is a chicken-and-egg problem.)

  3. Robert, I'll get over there one of these days and look. My coworker who told me about it is on vacation for another couple weeks. If you are over there often, ask the security people, I bet the power outlets are right next to their parking like they are at Lehigh Valley.

    To be clear, it is just a regular 20 amp outlet like in your kitchen, not a charger per se. You will need you little yellow box, the so called Occasional Use Charge cord.

    Dan, you must be a lawyer, right? Ha ha. Or maybe that was YOU parking there? I have the license plate in the uncropped photo.