Charging Stations Ahead

Montauk has changed a lot in the last decade, and Tesla, Elon Musk’s top-of-the-line electric car company, has taken notice. The company is hoping to build charging stations at several spots around the hamlet, among them Kirk Park Beach and the town parking lot behind White’s on the Plaza — servicing not only its own vehicles but other electric cars as well.

Tesla already has “destination” charging stations, which are compatible with its own cars only, at two upscale locations in Montauk, Gurney’s resort and the Montauk Yacht Club. Edwin Ziao, a company spokesman, told the Montauk Citizens Advisory Committee on Monday that the stations it is now proposing would be “universal, super-charging” models. The major difference is the rate of charge; destination chargers can fill a car overnight, universal super-chargers will do it in just over an hour, for all electric-car models. Currently, the nearest super-charger is in Southampton, off County Road 39 in the parking lot of the Cafe Crust mall.

Both the electricity and hardware would be paid for by Tesla. Kim Shaw, director of the Natural Resources Department, said East Hampton would be the first town in which the company has assumed the full costs of installation.

“Sounds good to me,” one advisory committee member said of the proposal, “if they put a free gas pump there too.”

The price of electricity fluctuates, but according to the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average price per kilowatt hour in New York State for May 2018 was 20 cents. Electricity for a full charge would probably cost between $20 and $25.

A Tesla representative will make a presentation to the East Hampton Town Board at its work session on Tuesday.