Getting ‘plugged-in’ is easier than ever at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport.
The Port of Seattle recently opened 36 new electric vehicle charging stations in Sea-Tac’s main terminal garage to become the largest provider of any North American airport. The charging stations, compatible with most electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles, are free to visitors who pay to park in the garage. Combined with Sea-Tac’s 12 existing charging stations, installed over the past two years, the airport now offers 48 spaces on a first-come, first-served basis.
“Our electric charging stations have been consistently full and we anticipate the future demand to continue to grow,” said Elizabeth Leavitt, director of aviation planning and environmental management at Sea-Tac Airport. “Living in a region where residents clearly value the environment, we strive to provide services that help our customers meet their goals to reduce their carbon footprints.”
There are an estimated 165,000 electric vehicles on the road in the U.S., and Washington state has the second most registered electric vehicle users after California. On an average day, more than 5,000 vehicles park in Sea-Tac’s garage. The electric vehicle stalls are equipped with Level 1 charging (110 volt standard outlet). The stations can fully charge most plug-in electric vehicles in 10-12 hours.
Twelve stations are located on the fourth floor (in Terminal Direct) and 36 stations are on the fifth floor (in General Parking). Signage in the garage directs customers to individual parking stalls marked “Electric Car Charging.” Twelve parking spaces are located on the fourth floor in Row I. On the fifth floor, 12 spots are located in each row at D, G, and I.
“We’re proud to be a leader in airport parking” said Jeff Hoevet, Senior Manager of Airport Operations. “By staying ahead of customer demand and offering additional services like electric vehicle charging stations, we ensure that Sea-Tac Airport continues to be the facility of choice for traveling customers.”
The $50,000 project saved time and money with work done by in-house Port of Seattle electricians.
Investing in Clean Air at Sea-Tac
An electric vehicle saves an annual average of 5 tons of greenhouse gases per year. The electric vehicle charging stations are part of Sea-Tac’s larger air quality strategy, which includes:
• A fleet of clean, compressed natural gas (CNG) buses moving customers between the terminal and the Rental Car Facility,
• Centralized pre-conditioned air to reduce emissions and save fuel for aircraft parked at gates,
• Requirements for taxis serving the airport to use CNG vehicles or have high efficiency engines (45 miles per gallon or better), and
• A centralized off-aircraft recycling system of large capacity, computer-monitored compactors that reduces waste sent to landfills, decreases air emissions, improves ramp safety and saves more than $250,000 each year