KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Kansas City is famous for a lot of things -- cattle, barbecue and jazz to name a few. Being a mecca for the green vehicle movement? Perhaps not so much.
But that may change. Early this year, Kansas City Power & Light announced a bold plan to install more than 1,000 electric vehicle charging stations over its service area, which covers Kansas City, Mo.; Kansas City, Kan., and a swath of rural western Missouri and eastern Kansas.
With its $20 million Clean Charge Network, KCP&L is with one stroke vaulting a heartland metropolis ahead of such electric-drive hot spots as California in the race to install an EV infrastructure. It's a daring attempt to solve the chicken-and-egg range anxiety problem that has hobbled EV sales for automakers such as Nissan, which is one of the sponsors of the network.
"If you build it, they will come," says Chuck Caisley, KCP&L vice president of marketing and public affairs.
The Clean Charge Network, announced in January, initially will consist of 1,001 240-volt stations and 15 direct current fast-charging stations. One station is capable of charging two vehicles at a time. KCP&L has installed about 150 of them and plans to finish the job this year. Already, requests for the stations have exceeded the number KCP&L will install.