SAN MARCOS — For the past year, Mayor Rebecca Jones and electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla have been setting the stage to install the company’s fastest supercharging station.
Jones was the first to plug in her own Tesla on Aug. 17 at the city’s first installation of the fastest Tesla supercharging station at Creekside Marketplace on San Marcos Boulevard and state Route 78. It’s the first Level 3 supercharging station in North County.
Jones said the station will be a driver for the city’s economy, marketplace, electric vehicles and infrastructure for future clean energy projects. The station has at least 20 chargers, each providing up to 250 kilowatts to reach a full charge in 20 minutes.
The station is open 24 hours.
“Tesla chargers are typically economic drivers,” Jones said. “When I first started talking to Tesla and found out they were looking at San Marcos, they asked me if we wanted chargers, and I said, ‘Absolutely.’”
In Carlsbad, the city is preparing to open its own 250kW supercharging station with Tesla, with 16 slated to come online at the Carlsbad Premium Outlets on Paseo Del Norte. Carlsbad has another supercharging station, albeit with a lower electrical output of 72kW, at The Beacon La Costa on the corner of La Costa Avenue El Camino Real, which opened several years ago.
The La Costa location, though, can be upgraded to a faster output such as the 250kW in San Marcos.
In San Marcos, Jones said the station will also help with the city’s Climate Action Plan and emission goals, bringing another benefit to the city. There are no current plans between the city and Tesla to install another station, but Jones said she is all for more, including home installations.
Jones said the transition to electric vehicles (EVs) will be slow, calling it range anxiety. If infrastructure, such as charging stations or home installations are slow to market or municipal investments are sluggish. However, Jones remains optimistic and is hopeful more EV infrastructure will come to the city.
“It will bring people to our community … and it’s a great opportunity,” she said. “I think there is a lot of excitement and opportunity in North County. It’s convenient for drivers, motorists and people in the city as well.”
Christina Asai, membership director of the San Marcos Chamber of Commerce, echoed Jones’ comments and said the stations provide opportunities for those with Teslas and other electric vehicles.
Asai said many navigate their trips along routes with charging stations, so San Marcos is now on the Tesla and EV map, but the possibility of other large-scale developments would benefit more businesses.
Asai said the door is open and, if the parties can come together again, suggested potential future locations such as California State University at San Marcos. According to Asai, the charging stations are opportunities to increase resourcefulness.
“I think it opens up the door for better, clean support,” Asai said. “We represent that intersection between residents and commerce. It’s nice to know that something like this is being brought to the front of mind for those users.”
UPDATE: This story has been updated to clarify the station in San Marcos is not the first Tesla supercharging station in North County. The first was in La Costa in Carlsbad several years ago.