The Midtown Plaza parking garage will soon be converted into Manhattan’s first dedicated indoor electric vehicle charging site for public use. Located at 401 West 42nd Street, the street-level garage is designed to accommodate 29 vehicles and will be equipped with True Fast charging stations that replenish electric vehicle batteries much faster than standard-grade chargers.
Plans for the Midtown Plaza site were designed by local architect Jasmit Rangr for Gravity Inc., an infrastructure start-up that focuses on bringing high-speed electric vehicle charging garages to dense urban centers like New York City. Gravity estimates the new facility will support charging for roughly 600 electric vehicles a day, including its own fleet of all-electric yellow taxis.
Unlike typical bare concrete parking garages, the renderings illustrate a dealership-like space with its walls clad with wood louvers and large video displays throughout.
The parking garage is currently owned by Related Companies. Lease terms and negotiations between Gravity and Related have not been made public including how the charging stations will be monetized when in use.
Costs associated with the installation of infrastructure and equipment necessary to connect the chargers to the city’s electric grid will be financed, in part, by Con Edison’s EV PowerReady Infrastructure Incentive Program, formerly known as the “Make-Ready” Program. The $235 million program launched in July 2020 and provides cash incentives to offset the upfront costs of constructing and installing electric vehicle charging stations.
“Related is a champion of environmentally conscious design, construction, and operation in real estate and remains devoted to reducing the environmental footprint at our properties,” said Related Companies vice chairman Jeff Brodsky. “We are proud to be a part of this monumental moment in offering sustainable, True Fast Charging in Manhattan through Gravity and its unique innovation.”
Gravity has surveyed hundreds of parking garages across New York City, analyzed their space and power constraints, and developed a portfolio of design solutions to retrofit them for electric vehicle charging. The start-up is hopeful that their solutions will become a reality for residents and drivers in the near future.
“This is a technological leap for big cities like New York that have struggled to meet demand for charging in space-constrained indoor garages,” said Gravity founder and CEO Moshe Cohen. “We’re opening the first True Fast Charging in Manhattan, and now we are poised to rapidly scale our solution across New York City and beyond.”
The Midtown Plaza charging center is currently under construction and is expected to debut this fall.