On Thursday the mayors of San Francisco, San Jose and Oakland held a press conference to announce that the Bay Area would be home to Americaâ€™s first electric car network, to be designed by Better Place, Shai Agassiâ€™s electric car company. Better Place, in case you donâ€™t recall, plans to build a network of charging stations which will enable the drivers of its electric cars to plug in wherever they go. Mr. Agassi has already signed on his native Israel, as well as Denmark and Australia, but until Thursday he had yet to secure a commitment from the US.
Better Placeâ€™s vision is large scale and sweeping, and to make it work they need money but â€“ more importantly â€“ political support. Building the network will require an untold amount of permits and, obviously, cooperation with the local electric utility, which is something that politicians can help with more than VC funds. The three mayors have outlined a nine point plan for making the Bay Area the â€œelectric vehicle capital of Americaâ€. Among those points are helping out with the aforementioned permits, as well as buying lots of Better Place cars for municipal fleets and providing incentives for businesses to build charging stations on their property.
Itâ€™s an exciting achievement for a startup founded just over a year ago. The media loves the copmany, which landed a cover story in WIRED a few months ago. But while Mr. Agassi may be very good at selling his idea, the basic premise that this will all work still hasnâ€™t been proven. The biggest question revolves around the batteries â€“ will they work well? Will they last? Three mayors believe they will; the rest of us will wait and see.
Via Greentech Media
Image via sfgate.com
written by Sherry, November 23, 2008
written by Mark, November 25, 2008
|< Prev||Next >|