Some Unusual Locations for EV Charge Stations in Marin County

By Paul Gipe

Recently we took a train trip to San Francisco and on to Corte Madera by ferry. For lack of something better to do, we drove to a number of Electric Vehicle (EV) charge stations in the vicinity.

For those who don’t know, Marin County is one of the more upscale areas of California. It’s not Kern County, where we live, not by a long shot. For example, there are a lot more EVs on the road than down here in oil country. It’s a land of Teslas and BMW i3s with the occasional down market Leaf thrown in.

One of the charge stations we visited was at The Village at Corte Madera near where we were staying. It was easy to find. It was just down the parking lot from the Tesla store. (And we got in on a demo of the Model X’s gull-wing doors while there.) The EVgo station had one dedicated CHAdeMO and one dual CHAdeMO and CCS.

Then we stopped at what happens to be one of the best charging locations in southern Marin County: Target. The 20 Level 2 J1772 stations are in a landscaped area with spectacular view overlooking San Rafael Bay. If you have to spend several hours on a Level 2 charging, this is the place to do it.

From there we headed to United Markets’ Blink station downtown San Rafael.

As tourists, we bypassed all the other stations nearby and headed for the Marin County Civic Center. For years I’ve read of the Frank Lloyd Wright designed Civic Center. This was a chance to see it up close. The Level 2 was located right inside one of Wright’s famous arches. There were also Level 2 stations at the Marin Center Exhibit Hall, a building built in the manner of Wright.

While at the Civic Center we took in a game of Petanque played under the ample shade of plane trees, just as you’d find in southern France.

The next day we took our hybrid diesel-electric train back down the San Joaquin Valley to Bakersfield and home.