Positioned in the middle of nowhere, the city of Elk Horn, IA barely registers on our GPS screen. With a recorded population of 649 residents, this small town is known as a center for Danish ethnicity and is home to the Danish Immigrant Museum. With just 248 homes scattered over the city's 0.8 square miles of land, it seems unlikely that Elk Horn could lay claim to the world's highest concentration of anything. But this tiny town has done just that when we consider public electric vehicle (EV) charger density.
With four public chargers in use, Elk Horn claims that it has the highest number of EV chargers per capita of any city in the world. Though it's a bold claim, we see no reason to dispute it. With one charger for every 162 people and four additional chargers on the way (!), Elk Horn is likely to retain its top spot for quite some time. Hit the jump to watch video outlining Elk Horn's ambitious EV plans.
[Source: Transportation TV]
Tiny Iowa Town has Nation's Highest Concentration of Electric Charging Stations: Local Businessman is Inspiration behind Electric Car Emphasis
If you've heard of tiny Elk Horn, Iowa, it's probably because it is home to the only functioning Danish windmill in the world. But the small community is also notable because of the presence of a more cutting-edge technology: four electric car charging stations.
The popularity of electric cars is beginning to sweep the nation, but nowhere so much as in Elk Horn, where you can find the highest concentration of public charging stations anywhere in the world. The community has plans to build four more stations there in the next few months, bringing the total to eight.
Transportation TV spoke with Mike Howard, the 57-year-old businessman who is the brains behind the interest in electric cars in his community. "We are really pre-positioned here way ahead of the curve. We are confident that when electric cars come, we have a location where people can charge their vehicles, enjoy our town, and then be able to continue on their journey."
Howard hopes to expand the presence of public charging stations along the Interstate 80 corridor, linking tiny Elk Horn, population 600, to hundreds of thousands of travelers crossing the Midwest.
In this Transportation TV report, Howard describes both the advantages and challenges that come with electric cars. They cost less than traditional gas-powered vehicles, and a visit to the charging station only costs about $1 a day, according to Howard. But many electric cars also have a limited range and can take between four and eight hours to fully recharge. As a result, trips in electric cars must be carefully planned.
Although use of electric cars is still not widespread, Howard predicts that in the near future, their numbers on the road will increase significantly. "My prediction is maybe 70-80% of the population will have electric vehicles in 10-15 years," Howard said.