The Toronto Atmospheric Fund (TAF) could soon be disbursing grants to help install about 300 electric vehicle chargers in public venues and multi-unit residential buildings throughout the Greater Toronto and Hamilton Area (GTHA). That’s contingent on Toronto Council’s approval for the city agency to be the channel for $2 million in funding from the federal government’s Zero Emission Vehicle Infrastructure Program (ZEVIP).
TAF applied to be a ZEVIP delivery organization in support of Canada’s broader target for electric vehicles to constitute 10 per cent of light-duty vehicle sales by 2025 and 30 per cent by 2030, and specifically to address the needs of so-called garage orphans, who are less likely to have access to charging facilities because they do not live in a single-family dwelling. Its proposal — which has received conditional approval from Natural Resources Canada (NRCan) ahead of a yet-to-be-signed formal agreement — focuses on advancing funds for projects in underserved areas, and to groups and landlords lacking their own in-house project management resources.
“Our proposed focus is on installation in public places, on-street and in multi-unit residential buildings with a priority on smaller projects and clients who would otherwise face difficulties securing government funding and/or navigating the process of selecting and installing EV chargers,” explains Julia Langer, TAF’s chief executive officer. “We will support and accelerate the process for our target clients by: (1) retaining a technical advisory service that can assist them directly with their plans and application; and (2) offering a turnkey option with preselected vendors (turnkey option is subject to confirmation of feasibility during detailed design phase).”
TAF estimates $1.7 million of the ZEVIP funds will go to covering up to 50 per cent of costs of acquiring and installing 300 EV chargers, including 15 fast chargers. The remainder will underwrite the technical advisory services and other required administrative support. If Toronto Council endorses the initiative at its June meeting, TAF foresees finalizing an agreement with NRCan this summer and completing the project, as required, within 30 months.