Dunwoody Brings More Green to City Parks

October 14, 2016

This article appeared in the October 2016 issue of the Georgia's Cities newspaper.
The city of Dunwoody successfully installed two publicly-accessible electric vehicle (EV) charging stations within city limits. According to city officials, this achievement represents a first step in the successful implementation of the city’s Sustainability Plan and has received extremely positive reviews from citizens and visitors alike.

In fall 2013, the Dunwoody City Council adopt­ed a code amendment to clearly permit public EV charging stations for nonresidential uses in all zon­ing districts. In the spirit of setting an example for the community, the city’s Sustainability Commit­tee, within its proposed Sustainability Plan, called for EV charging stations to be installed at the city’s Brook Run Park and the Dunwoody Nature Center.

The city council adopted the Sustainability Plan in fall 2014, allowing a Request for Proposal (RFP) for the new EV charging stations to be sent out ear­ly 2015. Initially Dunwoody was keen on renting the charging stations and using solar power gener­ated on site, until a review of the received propos­als revealed that purchasing the stations and using power exclusively from the public grid was a more cost effective solution.

Taking that directive, the city accepted a pro­posal from Hannah Solar to install three dual-port stations (two in Brook Run Park, one in Dunwoody Nature Center). The proposal included a three-year maintenance contract, monthly and quarterly use reports, proactive monitoring, and 24/7 customer service support.

Installation of the stations was completed in May 2016. Already, the EV charging stations are receiv­ing positive reviews as well as active participation from members of the community.

“Those who use electric vehicles in the city love that we have charging stations at Brook Run,” said Dunwoody Parks Director Brent Walker. “Their lo­cation at the entrance of the park makes the sta­tions easily accessible, and they [residents] are able to use our top-notch amenities, like our new multi-use trail, while they wait.”

Director of the Dunwoody Nature Center Alan Mothner finds that the EV charging stations have been effective in attracting visitors. “We frequently encounter users in the park who are able to take a few brief moments to reconnect with nature while charging their cars,” he said. “These visitors will bring a lunch and enjoy the quiet of the meadow to recharge themselves, or set up on the back deck where they can access Wi-Fi to get in a few extra minutes of work.”

Mayor Denis Shortal views the EV charging sta­tions as a positive first step towards the future. “The city of Dunwoody knows the importance of sus­tainability and sees the newly installed EV stations as the first step in a long-term process,” he said. “I suspect we are just starting to see the growth of alternative fuel-efficient vehicles.

“Doing this helps activate our initial sustain­able efforts and address the potential for future de­mand, while simultaneously creating great ameni­ties within our parks.”

In the coming years, the city of Dunwoody hopes to continue the initiative by installing EV charging stations at the new city hall, set to open in 2018.

Dunwoody residents enjoy the city’s new EV charging stations.

Tools to Enhance Cities’ Sustainability Efforts

Track Your City’s Carbon Footprint
Find out how your community compares to local averages and create a personalized climate action plan for your community with ICLEI’s ClearPath.
Explore Energy Efficient Options
Take advantage of multiple resources to create a sustainability plan and uncover ways to reduce your carbon footprint and increase energy efficiency by visiting: National League of Cities’ Sustainable Cities Institute, the publication center at the Power to Charge website, the Energy Sector Management Assistance Program, or EnergyStar.Gov.
Complete an Energy Audit
Georgia power offers a free energy audit upon request, and will also provide tips to better energy use and save money. Visit the Energy Audit page on the Georgia Power website for more information.
Join the ICLEI’s Compact of Mayors
ICLEI—Local Governments for Sustainability is the leading global network of more than 1,500 cities, towns and regions committed to building a sustainable future. The agency is tasked with connecting leaders, accelerating action and serving as a gate­way to solutions by providing advanced knowledge and delivering training to local leaders.
The Compact of Mayors is an agreement by city networks—and then by their members—to fight climate change in a consistent and complimentary manner to national efforts.

Back to Listing