Colwood a stop on world’s longest ‘green highway’

Electric car manages the cross-country trip with a fill up at Royal Bay Bakery

Piper Nathanial Roberts leads Kent Rathwell and his Tesla Roadster electric vehicle into Colwood

First by train, then vehicle and now electric car, Canadians have a new way to travel coast-to-coast.

When the Last Spike was driven into the Canadian Pacific Railway on Nov. 7, 1885, marking the first efficient way to travel coast-to-coast, it would have taken a Jules Verne-like imagination to predict that 127 years later you would be able to make the same trip in a personal vehicle run on electricity.

But that day is here, as evidenced by Kent Rathwell’s trip from the shores of Newfoundland to the edge of the Pacific Ocean in Victoria in his electric Tesla Roadster.

Rathwell drove the length of the Trans-Canada Highway, juicing his car along the way at charging stations installed across the country by his company, Sun Country Highway.

Rathwell stopped at one of those charging stations in Colwood just before Christmas. The station at the Royal Bay Bakery was installed in March. Bakery owner David Grove owns a Nissan Leaf electric vehicle and had the station installed so that he and customers could “fuel up”.“The inspiration has come really from talking to EV owners across Canada,” Rathwell said during the local stop. “The way that you guys have spread the word has made it easy for us to get this done. It’s a pleasure being in Colwood, definitely one of the leading communities in the country and probably North America, for that matter.”

Rathwell left on his trip from St. John’s, Newfoundland on Nov. 17. He took his time, stopping in communities along the way to talk about his journey and, of course, to recharge the car.

The Tesla Roadster can travel 245 miles per charge, about 394 kilometres. A second electric car was towed in a trailer for the trip as a backup, but it was never necessary. Rathwell always managed to get to a charging station in time and the little car managed to make it through any weather thrown at it.

“Somebody needed to take it and get it done, it’s been waiting way too long,” Rathwell said.

“Why not have Canada become the leading country? We’re recognized in this country as caring people and with one of the most difficult climates and geographies to conquer and if we can do it here, we can do it anywhere.”

Fred Wissemann, Leaf Club president, welcomed Rathwell to the bakery, along with Mayor Carol Hamilton, Coun. Judith Cullington and electric car vehicle owners from the Victoria Leaf Club. The Leaf Club presented Rathwell with it’s newly created 2012 ECO Award in recognition of his accomplishment.

“People had the vision to put a railroad to connect the country,” Wissemann said. “And then they paved a road right across the country. And now we have a man that has a vision to do the same with electric cars. … He created the world’s longest green highway and we’re very happy and excited about his accomplishment.”

 

 

Just Posted

Fire in Sooke hills park likely caused by campfire

Crews currently focus on hot spots

Remains of two people found in Ucluelet

Officials have not said whether or not the remains belong to Ryan Daley or Dan Archbald

New one-way access to Peatt Road from Larkhall Road in Langford

City of Langford asking residents to use caution in the roundabout on Peatt Road

Suman, mom of Reena Virk, has died

Mother of 1997 murder victim became an activist against bullying

Canada won’t ‘play politics’ on U.S. migrant children policy

The U.S. government is under fire over its ”zero tolerance” policy

Late goal gives England 2-1 win over Tunisia

At the last World Cup in 2014, England couldn’t even win a game

Canadian military police officer pleads not guilty to sex assault

Sgt. Kevin MacIntyre, 48, entered his plea today at a court martial proceeding in Halifax

Cheers erupt as Federal Court judge approves historic gay purge settlement

Gay military veterans said they were interrogated, harassed and spied on because of their sexuality

Helping B.C.’s helpers cope

The MRT has helped almost 7,000 first responders and street workers in 57 communities in B.C.

Border officials argue B.C. man’s Facebook posts threat to Canada’s security

A B.C. Supreme Court judge acquitted Othman Hamdan of terrorism charges last September

Search for capsized fishers near Tofino enters fourth day

“There’s a lot of shock in the community in terms of how we could end up at this place.”

B.C. announces $75M to help friends, family care for seniors at home

Funding will go towards respite care and adult day programs

Timely tide attracts another pod of orcas to Victoria

The pod left the harbour about 30 minutes later

Most Read