Petro-Canada to close some charging stations, open others
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EV Charging
Jul 5, 2024
Emma Jarratt

The fuel and charging retailer says it is adjusting its network footprint in response to EV driver use

Petro-Canada is closing some of its charging stations, but is promising more in the future. Photo: Petro-Canada

The fuel retailer says it is adjusting its EV charging network footprint in response to driver use

Petro-Canada is closing some of its EV charging stations and drivers are taking notice.

Earlier this year, the fuelling giant, which also operates its own national EV charging network that it markets as the “Electric Highway,” announced it would be closing some of its charging stations due to low demand, but opening others at refurbished stations in more high traffic areas.

“Since launching our EV fast charger network, Canada’s Electric Highway, in 2019, we’ve learned a lot about our EV customers,” a Petro-Canada spokesperson wrote in an email in response to questions from Electric Autonomy.

“We continue to optimize our network as it matures, which includes gaining a better understanding of both electric vehicle uptake and charging demand. Our commitment to offering EV charging to our customers hasn’t changed, and so, while some charging stations will close at some of our sites, we will also open new charging stations at other sites. Overall, we will continue to offer fast chargers at Petro-Canada locations across Canada.”

Petro-Canada charging stations removed

The Petro-Canada spokesperson declined to publicly disclose where the company is closing charging stations.

“The sites that are closing are generally under utilized and in areas that make them challenging for us to maintain and operate,” says the spokesperson.

However, in reader comments submitted to Electric Autonomy, EV drivers are reporting that Petro-Canada stations in Ignace, Kenora and Espanola, Ont., are no longer in service.

PlugShare map showing Petro-Canada's EV charging network.
An end-to-end view of the Petro-Canada network now shows a 700-kilometre gap between Thunder Bay and Winnipeg. Photo: PlugShare

Further review of PlugShare data appears to show Petro-Canada’s chargers in Meductic, N.B., have also been shuttered. Some drivers have provided testimonials confirming the closures from this month as well as pictures showing the decommissioned sites.

However, adding to the confusion, Petro-Canada’s charger locator on its website indicates the Espanola and Meductic stations are still online.

Plan for the future

While the closure of some stations is raising ire among some EV drivers, Petro-Canada is assuring customers there will be new locations in future.

“New chargers will start popping up at new and refreshed Petro-Canada locations that offer the opportunity for increased use by more EV drivers,” says the spokesperson.

So, what does a “refreshed” station entail?

“We’ve learned that our customers appreciate a site with a ‘full offer’,” notes Shannon Wing, GM of retail sales and operations for Petro‑Canada, in a February 2024 statement. “They can fill or charge up, grab a bite to eat, get a car wash and pop into a convenience store all in one stop.”

The increase in amenities will mean that Petro-Canada will shut down some refuelling sites permanently if there is not space to expand. Others, with already large footprints, will simply get cosmetic makeovers before being put back online.

“We’re being thoughtful about when and where to temporarily close sites for renovations to minimize disruption to our customers and manage our costs carefully,” says Wing.

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