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Coast to Coast Bolt tour makes charging stop in Nelson

Chamber Executive Director Tom Thomson welcomes Buddy and Barb Hetherington to Nelson during a stop to charge their Chevy Bolt on a cross Canada tour. — Submitted photo

Imagine driving an electric vehicle across Canada from coast to coast.

It’s not a dream as Buddy and Barb Hetherington are proving electric cars have a place on highways after driving their new Chevy Bolt across Canada, and back.

The Gibsons, BC, couple were in Nelson last week to charge the Bolt at the station next to the Chamber of Commerce in the former CPR station.

The Hetherington adventure, which started July 1 in the waters off Victoria, has taken the couple across Canada to the eastern provinces and back.

Friday, the couple made a stop in Nelson to recharge before heading off to Castlegar to Kalawsky Chevrolet Buick GMC to have the tires rotated.

“Travelling across Canada by car is a great way to get to know our beautiful country,” Barb Hetherington said in a blog post. “We want to show that it is possible to have a fun road trip adventure with a lower impact.”

The Chevrolet Bolt or Chevrolet Bolt EV is a front-engine, five-door all-electric subcompact hatchback marketed by Chevrolet. The Bolt is EPA-estimated at 238 miles.

The City of Nelson electric vehicle (EV) charging station located at the foot of Baker Street in Railtown.

The EV charger installation was opened May 25, 2017.

The station can charge two cars at one time. Eventually there will be a cost for charging energy; however as part of encouraging EV usage it will initially be zero cost use.

Part of the choice of location was to ensure visitors who are charging their vehicles would be within walking distance of the downtown core.

To make electric vehicle ownership and travel a more realistic reality for both residents and tourists in the Kootenays, the Regional Districts of Kootenay Boundary, Central Kootenay and East Kootenay endorsed a Columbia Basin-wide electric vehicle strategy to improve the Highway 3 corridor.

The two-year project is designed to maximize electric vehicle adoption by residents and to support tourism and economic diversification.

This will be achieved through the installation of a network of DC Fast Charging and Level 2 electric vehicle charging stations.

Fast-charging stations allow for a quick stop on route, while Level 2 stations provide opportunity to shop, dine or visit tourism attractions while vehicles charge for up to six hours.