Chicago’s Electric Car Charging Stations Still Not Completed

EV charging station outside a West Loop Walgreens installed by 350Green

It was a major deal in 2010 when Chicago announced it had just signed a contract to have a company called 350Green install 280 electric vehicle charging stations around the city.

Two years later, after 350Green only completed 60% of the installations, the city felt something wasn’t kosher and essentially pulled the plug on the project–but only after paying out nearly $2 million to 350Green.

“The City discovered apparent financial irregularities involving 350Green LLC’s installation of electric vehicle charging stations,” said Tom Alexander, a spokesperson with the Mayor’s office at the time. “We immediately notified the appropriate authorities and are cooperating fully with those agencies and any potential investigation.”

But now, the Chicago Tribune has an update on the 350Green fiasco and things seems to be getting worse for the company according to the newspaper.

According to the Tribune, beyond the requisite Inspector General’s Office investigation, the FBI is looking into 350 Green.

It seems, despite getting a $1.9 million check from the city, 350Green did not pay some of its vendors. The Tribune spoke to two contractors who worked installing EV charging units who were allegedly stiffed by 350Green. The contractors, who are owed tens of thousands of dollars, confirm they’ve communicated with the FBI.

Here’s the full Tribune story, “Electric car charging station project in limbo.”

5 Responses to Chicago’s Electric Car Charging Stations Still Not Completed

  1. B says:

    shocking! Who could have expected that another ‘green’ company was created for the purpose of getting government grants to enrich the principle players?

  2. David says:

    The bigger issue is that while the non-emissions of the electronic cars are beneficial in the city, the technology really does not work as long as so many Chicago drivers park outside on the street. Electric cars are great in somewhere where most drivers park their cars in a garbage or a carport and drive a relatively consistent (and short) distance each day and perhaps drive to a company that has a large employee parking facility, which again can work with charging. I suspect in parks of Southern California they are a great idea. I suspect that they would actually work pretty well in much of the Washington DC suburbs. Chicago, not so much. Chicago suburbs as a car to drive to the train from your garage? Great idea.

    The proposal? It was based on a bad idea, in part because unlike a fuel powered car, refilling or recharging an electric car takes a good deal of time.

  3. barnet says:

    “apparent financial irregularities”
    Sounds like Redflex rhetoric

  4. Pete says:

    OMG, a politically connected vendor got money from the city and then very half-assedly delivered a fraction of what they were paid for. I’m shocked! Funny how often this continues to happen.

  5. The Parking Ticket Geek says:

    Pete,

    You making me laugh my a$$ off.

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