Indy weighs future of electric car-charging stations

By The Associated Press

INDIANAPOLIS — The impending demise of an electric car-sharing service in Indianapolis has left city officials faced with the question of what should happen to the dozens of car-charging stations that powered those vehicles.

BlueIndy will end its collaboration with the city of Indianapolis on May 21. Under the city’s contract with BlueIndy, it has 90 days from that date to decide whether to buy the 81 electric car-charging stations.

If so, it must purchase all of them.

The city and Paris-based Bolloré Logistics, which launched BlueIndy in Indiana's capital in September 2015, may negotiate for a fair market value. But each can also hire two appraisers to assess the total cost at the "highest and best price" possible, The Indianapolis Star reported.

Although Mayor Joe Hogsett's administration said it’s keeping all options on the table, officials are eyeing the possibility of taking advantage of the existing infrastructure that taxpayers already helped purchase.

"Most people we have talked to have indicated that the most valuable part of this BlueIndy experiment is that we now have physical infrastructure that's both telecom and electric-ready," said Chief Deputy Mayor Thomas Cook.

City officials also must figure out what to do with 401 soon-to-be unused electric car parking spots adjacent to the charging stations.

Officials announced in December that the BlueIndy service would end in May, after the electric car-sharing service failed to live up to its projected number of users.

The BlueIndy project cost about $50 million, with the company investing $41 million, the city contributing $6 million and Indianapolis Power & Light Co. covering the remaining $3 million.

More on