Target has announced plans to deploy 600 plug-in vehicle charging points at 100 locations in more than 20 states over the next two years. The new push into plug-in vehicle charging expands on the 18 sites in 5 states that currently host charging stations.
To accomplish this, Target has partnered with Tesla, ChargePoint, and Electrify America to leverage their respective charging networks and solutions. The push will see EV charging ports installed at only a fraction of its 1,828 stores but speaks to a continuing shift in corporate sentiment with respect to electric vehicles. New stores will benefit from the new focus on plug-in vehicle charging and will be considered potential site hosts as part of the new construction.
Target backed the move with talk of increases in EV adoption, noting in the press release that, “They’re gaining popularity: More than 1 million electric cars are projected to be sold by 2020, and by 2030, it’s estimated that one in four new cars sold will be electric.”
The push is clearly a simple recognition that EV charging is an incremental service that Target can offer to it’s customers while adding yet another reason for them to come to Target. As a special bonus, EV drivers are likely to stay longer at charging locations, so if that location just happens to be a place that also sells Slurpees and diapers, Target is likely to benefit.
John Leisen related, “It’s an opportunity to work with industry-leading partners to bring a more convenient shopping experience to guests as we look to design lower-carbon solutions throughout our entire operation.”
Flipping over to Target’s 2016 Social Responsibility Report, the broader plan is laid out. The new EV chargers are a part of a much larger corporate push for sustainable operations. Target has specific goals concerning actual EV charging station installs, rooftop solar installations, off-site renewable generation, and even increasing the amount of organic food it sells.
Target has a goal of being powered by 100% renewables and believes it is on track to have rooftop solar on 500 of its stores by 2020. That’s nearly 1 out of 3 of all Target stores, which likely contributed to the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA) naming Target the top corporate solar installer in the US two years in a row.
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