City of Hobart installs first public electric bike charging points

    The City of Hobart in Tasmania has recently installed its first public electric bicycle charging points at the Aquatic Centre. Located at 1 Davies Ave, Queens Domain TAS 7000, the site now offers two eBike charging stations.

    eBike owners can simply park their electric bike, as they would at any other bike stand, but these stands provide 240v outlets (also known as GPOs) for users to connect their chargers. Given the length of time (usually hours) required to charge an eBike, this raises the issue of bike security during this time.

    To solve this, the charging stands allow owners to use a padlock to lock their own charger in a metal compartment while the battery on their bike is charging.

    The system is provided by SARIS Infrastructure out of North America and is priced at US$1,500 per station. The company has 1 local distributor in Australia, All 4 cycling in Clayton, Victoria.

    The system is actually expandable to support as many as 8 eBikes. These charging locations obviously need to be connected to mains power, which would be an additional cost, as would be the installation.

    For those Tasmanians keen to try them out, you should know these support wheels between 20″ to 29″ in diameter and up to 5″ tyres which should support almost any on the market.

    Electric Vehicles in Australia predominantly use one charging standard, CCS2, while a small number rely on the CHAdeMO connector. Unfortunately, there is almost no standardisation between manufacturers, which means a charging location like this, is unable to provide the charger itself, instead the ability to support BYO chargers, along with a way to secure your bike while it is being charged from the standard GPO.

    The units include an active cooling system to prevent the charger from overheating while secured inside.

    While most eBikes provide a healthy amount of range, usually enough to get home and back a couple of times, having electric bike charging facilities at key destinations means that residents from further away will be able to travel from greater distances, without fear they’ll not be able to get home.

    What is missing from this solution is any information about charger availability or a mobile app that allows potential customers to see what is hopefully a growing network of these on a map.

    This idea was first raised at the City of Hobart’s December 2021 meeting and now in early 2023 it’s a reality. Let’s hope other councils consider following this initiative.

    Jason Cartwright
    Jason Cartwright
    Creator of techAU, Jason has spent the dozen+ years covering technology in Australia and around the world. Bringing a background in multimedia and passion for technology to the job, Cartwright delivers detailed product reviews, event coverage and industry news on a daily basis. Disclaimer: Tesla Shareholder from 20/01/2021

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