Transportation Engineering students at the University of Washington presented their Capstone Projects on July 1st, on the UW campus. Mayor Jill Boudreau and members of the Design Team were invited to watch the students present their research and recommendations.
The students worked in four teams, and each presented their final proposals to the entire class. The areas of focus included:
• Community Needs
• EV Adoption Projections
• Economic Benefits
• Analysis of User Types (local vs visitors)
• Type of EV Chargers and Distribution on levels
• Power Loads and Efficiency
• EV’s at ADA stalls
• Future Expansion and Flexibility
• Operations and Maintenance
• Signage Requirements
The students validated many of the approaches to design that have been incorporated into the project to date, and also brought up some very interesting and intriguing items for the City and Design Team to ponder.
Students studied the adoption rates of Electric Vehicles (EVs) in Skagit County compared to the rest of the State, and in relation to the policies that will phase out gas-powered vehicle production by 2030 (only 8 years from now!).
Generally, all of the team agreed that the amount of chargers planned for the future, both at opening and in the future, aligns with future adoption rates. It was acknowledged that full utilization of all EV’s will take time, but once the scales tip, the facility will be used to its full potential.
There were proposals which suggested that all types of EV charges should be used (Level 1, Level 2 and FCDC), while others suggested just L2 and FCDC, as the potential wave of the future for demand.
Some teams proposed locating the chargers all on one parking level and others recommended distributing the various types throughout all of the levels of parking.
There was discussion about the use of the chargers by local residents and visitors, and how that influences the types of chargers recommended, as well as the economic benefits of having people shop and dine in the downtown while charging.
We appreciate all of the hard work that the students put into their thoughtful analysis and proposals, and are extremely grateful for the opportunity to be invited to watch their presentations. Thank you to the students and faculty for engaging with us on this important future-forward project!