Many people who own an electric vehicle also own a home, so they can install a charger in their garage or driveway. But that’s usually not an option for people who rent.

“If you are a renter or an apartment dweller, you may not have access to home charging,” says Miriam Bouallegue, a project manager at the Metropolitan Energy Center, a nonprofit in Kansas City.

Her group is working with the city to help overcome this barrier so more residents can switch to electric vehicles.

Their plan is to add chargers to existing streetlight poles, where they are easy to see and convenient to access.

With the Missouri University of Science and Technology, Bouallegue’s team mapped areas where chargers might be needed, like near apartment complexes, shops, and restaurants.

They eliminated the sites that wouldn’t work, like places where a sidewalk runs between the light pole and parking.

That left them with 80 curbside locations. They plan to install up to 60 chargers in these sites by the end of the year.

“Folks can park their vehicle overnight or for a few hours while they’re visiting a business,” Bouallegue says. “So it allows for expanded access to charging for renters.”

And that makes it easier to drive electric.

Reporting credit: Stephanie Manuzak/ChavoBart Digital Media