Roanoke Cooperative (RC) recently celebrated the first electric vehicle (EV) fast charger installation in Gates County at Tarheel BBQ in Eure. The co-op installed the charger next to the restaurant at the heavily traveled intersection of US 13 / US 158. The ceremony included speeches from local and state leaders, town and county officials, RC's EV program members, and co-op staff members. The Level-3 fast charger, the fastest type available, will be free to the public and open 24 hours a day, year-round.
CEO Marshall Cherry shared that the installation is part of the co-op's mission to reduce carbon emissions and add more chargers across the co-op's service area. "One of the main issues with Americans fully embracing electric vehicles is the lack of charging stations," said Cherry. "A recent study revealed that growth in public charging infrastructure is not keeping pace with the rising number of EVs on the road. We must address this issue as we strive to work towards a cleaner future."
The study Cherry referenced is by JD Power, which determined that a shortage of public chargers remains the most significant issue holding Americans back from buying electric vehicles. "Public charging," said Cherry, "will make consumers more confident about buying and driving EVs." The charging station is part of Roanoke Cooperative's work to advance local economic prosperity, demonstrate community spirit, and promote a path to resilience in rural northeastern NC. "This cooperative exists to marshal collective action," said Cherry, "and provide services and programs like this charger installation - all to solve local problems — together, we are progressing toward shared prosperity."