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VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. -- The Navy Exchange Service Command (NEXCOM) announced Jan. 8 that it is piloting a program to offer electric vehicle charging stations at several of its NEXs.
"We are piloting this program to meet the needs of our customers who own electric vehicles," said Robert J. Bianchi, chief executive officer, NEXCOM. "Since electricity is considered an alternative fuel, we are also in alignment with the government's goal to reduce petroleum consumption through improvements in fleet fuel efficiencies and the use of alternative fuels. Electric vehicle charging stations are a win for our customers, for the Navy and for the environment."
NEX Bethesda, Md., is the first store to offer electric vehicle charging. Adjacent to the new NEX is a two-level 500-space parking garage that features two electric vehicle charging spots reserved specifically for eco-friendly, low emissions vehicles.
"Our customers are definitely using the electric vehicle charger," said Rico J. Macaraeg, head of Employee Development and Marketing, NEX Northern District. "We have one customer who comes in during his lunch hour to charge his car. While the car is charging, he grabs lunch in our food court and does some shopping."
The cost for charging an electric vehicle in Bethesda is $.48 per kilowatt hour. Customers pay for the service at the charging station by either using radio frequency identification credit or a ChargePoint® key fob card, which acts as a debit card.
"The price to charge a vehicle may differ from one NEX location to another," said Larry Boone, NEXCOM's automotive program manager. "We survey the surrounding area to ensure our pricing is competitive with the local market. We want to make sure our customers are receiving the best price, just like any other product or service they would find at the NEX."
NEXCOM plans to provide electric vehicle charging stations at NEX San Diego and NEX North Island, Calif., this year and NEX Annapolis, Md., in 2014 when its new store is scheduled to open.
"We chose these locations to offer electric vehicle charging stations because electric vehicle concentration is greater in these metropolitan areas," said Boone.