Electric Vehicle Charging Station: Bring your Tesla (or Volt!) to Spokane. . .



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This is a new service–an electric vehicle charging station, with prioritized free use for our overnight guests at the Odell House.


If you are traveling near Spokane and feel you might need a charge, let us know–we can reserve it for you.

Or, you can reserve it yourself:  https://reservations.frontdeskanywhere.net/odellhouse/

(We put a default cost of $20 on the reservation form, but charging is free to our guests and they will not be billed.)

Here’s the report: we now provide an electric vehicle charging station for our guests at the Odell House–and of course the odd stranded shopper.  This photo was taken when we were in the process.  The actual plug is just to the left of the unit.  One can park about nine feet from it.


The Odell House is in Browne’s Addition–just west of downtown Spokane–a great location and home base for a weekend trip with your electric vehicle.

Why great? To charge, one has of course to leave the car plugged in.  While that car is plugged in you will be within half a block of public transportation.  (Getting to downtown or the airport is easy.)  You’ll be in walking distance (four blocks) from half a dozen great places to eat and drink, a grocery store, bike shop and a museum.


If you visit in summer there is also a play ground and park with fun water feature for your shorter friends.


Back story: Rick and I have a Leaf (Nissan all-electric vehicle) which in real practice has a range of about 75-80 miles–given typical Spokane terrain and weather.


Some of the time the Leaf stays up at the Odell House to encourage me to ride my bike to work.

(Rick needs no such encouragement).

You can see the Leaf (above) (parked near our clothes line) with the new charging system, running off a dedicated 240v, 40 amp circuit.  This services the 30 amps that this GE Watt Station charger puts out–which is more than enough for a Leaf in any circumstances, and very good if not perfect for the higher powered EVs.

Tesla Folks–Please note: the plug-in circuit is right next to the Watt Station so that a Tesla owner whose equipment will take higher amps for a faster charge can unplug the Watt Station and use the main plug with their own equipment, effectively by passing the Watt Station.  The system is locked to prevent accidents so please let us know if you need this.  The plug style has a round ground pin and then two vertical blades, one smaller than the other.  (actual photo to come. . .  but it is this style:


How come I suddenly think this is important?

Well, because I DO think it is important.  People will not take up Electric Vehicles until range anxiety is effectively dealt with.  And even though we have some of the least expensive and most ecologically produced power in the country the Inland Washington area is WAY behind the coast in servicing this need.  (Currently, just forget it if you live in central Montana!)

So, while servicing the EV sector was a dream for us, it was not a top-priority to spend $2,000 on a system that would effectively only work for cars garaged within 75 miles.  While nice for the neighborhood, these are not typically our overnight guests.  And I just plug my Leaf into a 110 outlet and wait 22 hours for it to charge–once about every three days.  Like I said, I don’t drive very much.

But then a wonderful thing happened:  A stranded motorist who had arrived from Seattle called.  He told me he needed a place to charge his Tesla.  (This is rather like ET stopping by and asking directions–aliens do exist!.  We have HEARD about Teslas in Spokane.  But never actually seen one.)

I said, sure, come right over.

And he thanked me and did, using our 110 plug which we had advertised as available while he went to the Museum or such.  The trouble of course is that at that power level I think he said it would take 72 hours to charge his car to get back to Seattle.  Yes, you can go 250 miles or more in these cars–the battery is much larger than the Leaf.  But you still have to push the power back into them.  And the speed of that depends on both volts and amps.

He was good-naturedly hopping plug to plug around town trying to gather enough power to take his family home.

My projection, but I think this trip could not have been totally relaxing.

And though I greatly admire Mr Tesla’s dedication and pluck, and congratulate him on educating the locals, I really wanted to help more than I could.

He had good advice, and more importantly when shown an actual need, we had an excuse to take action and a directive on how to do so.  (In return for the paltry power source I could offer, I picked the Tesla traveler’s brain quite thoroughly.)  With the new system we are able to offer a full overnight charge for guests from  Seattle (or Portland or where ever they like to come from within range).  Which importantly means they can get home again.  (Seems a logical thing to worry about. . . )

And your cross-state EV trip is on us.  (As I noted above, with hydro powering the Spokane juice, this will be a very green excursion.)  We are offering EV charging at no cost to our overnight guests–though we would like to be told that we have an EV arriving so we can reserve the charger and the parking space.  We are also happy to have it used by local people in need, but in this case would appreciate donations so our paying guests do not end of paying for it indirectly.

I’m feeling pretty happy.  This charging station is, to my knowledge the fastest one between here and Wenatchee, and I’m hoping that because of it we see more EVs in our drive in the future.  Never mind in Spokane in general. . .


We are located about ten blocks from the highway, on the most western edge downtown of Spokane.

In the photo above, looking east–Browne’s Addition is to the lower right quarter of the picture,  just to the right of the curve of the river–where all the big white buildings are–most built 1895-1905.  A group of houses that later determined the meaning of “downsizing.”


If you click the above photo to enlarge it you will more easily see the group of deer that have come up from creek to take advantage of the lawn in early spring.  This is our neighborhood–a view from the porch in fact: the corner of First and Poplar Streets in Browne’s Addition: one of the first Spokane developments to have both telephone and electricity from the start.  Above, view from Odell House porch between the Finch House and Wakefield House


The Wakefield House. Just across the street with several unit in our furnished apartment rental program


The Campbell house, across the street to the right, is available for tours through the MAC Museum, which sits just to the east of it.


The Odell House Lodging, operated as a B&B, offering furnished apartments for both short and longer stays.

3 thoughts on “Electric Vehicle Charging Station: Bring your Tesla (or Volt!) to Spokane. . .

  1. No images in WordPress links above.

    If you REALLY want to attract Tesla visitors, get a(n) HPWC installed. Can take up to 100A input, though it will also handle 50A (80 or 40 continuous).

  2. Great information–and it could happen. What we did put in was what Tesla said would be comparable with the high end ‘Vegas Hotels, who actually want you to be able to charge the car–not just look green to all the folks who do not drive one. Thanks for your comment.

  3. I hope you were able to get the sales tax you paid for the watt station and on the labor and wiring, refunded. You can obtain the forms for the refund from the Department of Revenue. The relevant law is RCW 82.08.816 (Exemptions “Electric vehicle batteries and infrastructure”. It will expire 1-1-2020. 8.9% of $2000 is worth the phone call and stamp.

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