To promote zero emissions transportation within the community, Merri-bek installed Victoria’s first electric vehicle (EV) fast charge station in 2013,
Council now manages a network of 18 public chargers, accessible through the Chargefox network. Electricity at all Council chargers is 100% renewable power from the Crowlands Wind Farm.
Where can I find a charging station?
Merri-bek’s EV charging stations are located at:
- Merri-bek Civic Centre, 90 Bell Street, Coburg (x4)
- Boundary Road, corner of Boundary Road and Sydney Road, Coburg North (x1)
- CB Smith Reserve, Jukes Road, Fawkner (x1)
- Brunswick Mechanics Institute, David Street carpark, Brunswick (x2)
- Edward St carpark, Edward Street, Brunswick (x4)
- Oak Park Sports and Aquatic Centre, 563a Pascoe Vale Road, Pascoe Vale (x3)
- Glenroy Community Hub, Wheatsheaf Rd, Glenroy (x2)
- Fleming Park, Cross St, Brunswick East (x2)
Fees for charging
Fifteen of Council’s chargers are free to use while three fast chargers have a fee of 25c/kWh, well below market rate. This fee was introduced in July 2023 to help fund the installation, replacement and maintenance of Council-owned chargers.
The fee also helps encourage the private sector to install chargers in Merri-bek. Council has opened discussions with charging operators to increase the number of chargers in Merri-bek to cater for forecasted demand.
Charging at home
Public chargers are vital but charging at home is still a great option. Residents with off-street parking or garages can find more information on home charging options at the Electric Vehicle Council.
Unfortunately, at this stage, it’s not so straightforward for the estimated 5,500 Merri-bek properties accessing on-street parking. The temptation for residents in this situation is to run a cable over the sidewalk to their EV. Unfortunately, this is unsafe and against local laws however Council is committed to exploring solutions for residents in this situation.
Council is looking at whether a permit scheme is feasible for running electricity from a home to a car parked on the street. Are there requirements that, if met, could make on-street charging safe?
Council is also looking at whether EV chargers could be installed on power poles. This is currently being trialled by another council in Sydney, but any trial would need to be run by the electricity distributors who own the poles. Council is talking to our electricity distributors about the possibility of such a trial in Merri-bek.
In the meantime, residents who own an EV can access the 18 public chargers.