Electric vehicle test drive events
We’re partnering with Next Ride and the Clean Foundation to host 18 free electric vehicle test drive events in communities throughout the municipality between May and July, 2023. Our team will be on hand to answer questions and share information about electric vehicles, available rebates and what to expect from the municipality’s electric vehicle strategy.
At least one test drive event will be held in each district. See the full list of event dates and locations below. Secure your spot by registering for a free test drive event near you in advance. Limited walk-in spots will be available. Links to register will become available approximately two weeks before each event. To register, visit Next Ride’s webpage and scroll down to find our municipal test drive events as they become available.
|Musquodoboit Harbour Public Library 7900 Nova Scotia Trunk 7, Musquodoboit Harbour||May 18||10 a.m. to 1 p.m.|
|Woodlawn Public Library 31 Eisener Blvd., Dartmouth||May 19||10 a.m. to 1 p.m.|
|Sheet Harbour Public Library 22756 Hwy. 7, Sheet Harbour||May 24||12 - 3 p.m.|
|40 Alderney Dr., Dartmouth||June 14||10 a.m. to 1 p.m.|
|RBC Centre 259 Commodore Dr., Dartmouth||June 14||3 - 6 p.m.|
|Captain William Spry Community Centre 16 Sussex St., Halifax||June 15||10 a.m. to 1 p.m.|
|Chocolate Lake Recreation Centre 1014 Purcells Cove Rd., Halifax||June 15||3 - 6 p.m.|
|Wallace Lucas Community Centre Building 596 Lucasville Rd., Lucasville||June 16||10 a.m. to 1 p.m.|
|Sackville Sports Stadium 409 Glendale Dr., Lower Sackville||June 16||3 - 6 p.m.|
|St. Margaret’s Bay Centre 12 Westwood Blvd., Upper Tantallon||June 25||10 a.m. to 1 p.m.|
|Canada Games Centre 26 Thomas Raddall Dr., Halifax||June 25||3 - 6 p.m.|
|Gordon R. Snow Community Centre 1359 Fall River Rd., Fall River||July 6||3 - 6 p.m.|
|BMO Centre 61 Gary Martin Dr., Bedford||July 7||3 - 6 p.m.|
|Point Pleasant Park Halifax (lower parking lot by the water)||July 8||10 a.m. to 1 p.m.|
|Halifax Forum 2901 Windsor St., Halifax||July 8||3 - 6 p.m.|
|Bicentennial Theatre 12390 Hwy. 224, Middle Musquodoboit||July 9||10 a.m.-1 p.m.|
|Centennial Arena 27 Vimy Ave., Halifax||July 10||3 – 6 p.m.|
|Cole Harbour Place 51 Forest Hills Pky., Dartmouth||July 14||10 a.m.-1 p.m.|
Municipal Electric Vehicle Strategy
The Municipal Electric Vehicle (EV) Strategy was approved by Halifax Regional Council on Nov. 21, 2021. The strategy supports the transportation targets of HalifACT, the municipality’s climate action plan. The transportation sector represents approximately 20 per cent of community emissions in the Halifax Regional Municipality, with 90 per cent represented by light duty, personal vehicles.
The municipality is dedicated to supporting the decarbonization of transportation in part through our investment in public charging infrastructure. Our primary goals are to ease range anxiety and encourage the transition to electric vehicles.
While the private sector is expected to be the primary source of public charging infrastructure across the province, Regional Council has committed to leading infrastructure development in the short-term as electric vehicle adoption increases. This approach aligns with jurisdictions like Toronto, Victoria and Montreal.
Starting in summer 2023, the Halifax Regional Municipality will begin installing public charging infrastructure. Up to 18 sites are expected to be operational by summer 2025. The sites will span the entirety of the municipality and include urban, suburban and rural areas. Sites were selected based on the following criteria:
- Near amenities
- Near highway corridors
- In multi-unit residentially dense areas
- Distance from other public charging infrastructure
More information on the location of public charging infrastructure will be available soon.
- What has passed at Regional Council with respect to municipal Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Stations?
On Tuesday, May 9, 2023 Regional Council passed the first reading of Proposed By-Law U-113, an Amendment to By-Law U-100, Respecting User Charges – Electric Vehicle Charging Fees. This by-law sets the cost to use public EV charging stations owned and operated by the Halifax Regional Municipality. It is anticipated that second reading of this by-law will be brought forward to Regional Council in June.
- What will be the cost of charging at municipal EV charging stations?
For level 2 chargers (with charger capacity of 3.3 to 10.2 kW), the cost will be $1.80 per hour, or $0.03 per minute. For fast chargers (with charger capacity of 175 kW), the cost will be $45 per hour, or $0.75 per minute.
- If I don’t use the full charging time, am I charged the full cost of a session?
No – you are only charged for the time that you use, not by one hour session. Most vehicles can expect an 80 per cent charge in 20 minutes, for a total of $15. However, this will vary depending on the battery size and its level of charge.
- Why did the municipality choose this cost, while other private charging stations are charging less?
Our user fees were developed to offset the ongoing operating costs of the charging infrastructure (which includes maintenance, electricity costs, service fees, transaction fees, and snow clearing). While other private charging stations in the region may be charging less, they are also lower capacity. Comparing to other provinces is also challenging, as the cost of electricity can differ significantly from Nova Scotia. If a driver’s rate of charge drops, these fees encourage them to move to a lower capacity charger, freeing the fast charger up to a new driver.
- Will these costs ever change?
Any changes to the cost structure would be at the discretion of Regional Council. Staff will monitor the usage rates and operating costs of chargers as they are deployed. Based on the realized operating costs, staff may return to Regional Council with any user fee change recommendations.
- Q: Why is the municipality charging per minute, as opposed to by kilowatt-hour (kWh)?
Charging by the kilowatt-hour was just approved for use by Measurement Canada in February 2023 on a temporary basis. As the first reading of By-Law U-113 was only presented to Council on May 9, 2023, more investigation is needed before this can be recommended to Regional Council. Should kWh billing be deemed appropriate in the future, staff will return to Regional Council with amendments to the above fees.